Honolulu police shut down the eastbound lanes of Moanalua Freeway at around 5:30 a.m. this morning, through the peak of rushhour, after a woman’s body was found under the Queen Emma Street overpass. All traffic was forced off the freeway at the Punchbowl Street offramp while investigators pored over the scene. As a result, traffic backed up for miles on all major thoroughfares, including the H-1 airport viaduct, Pali and Nimitz highways, and Vineyard Boulevard. The freeway was reopened a little before 9 a.m.
The woman’s body was found in the center of three lanes, and police are unsure whether she was struck while on or crossing the freeway, or fell or jumped from the overpass. However, early radio and Honolulu Advertiser reports have focused on suicide as the likely explanation.
It is standard procedure for a road to be shut down whenever there is a fatality.
Only yesterday, Leeward residents saw the worst traffic jam in weeks as a result of several incidents, including a 24-inch water main break on Farrington Highway near Ko Olina, and two separate crashes on the H-1.