In 1998, or there-a-bouts, i was working for maui circulation, a magazine delivery service on the island of maui, hawaii. while driving south on south kihei road between kamaole beach park 2 and 3 mid-afternoon, i saw a ufo. i first heard a loud crackling noise like green wood exploding in a fire with a simultaneous heavy odor of charcoal or oil burning. in a few seconds i felt heat, like standing close to a fire-pit. then through the top right-hand front windshield i saw a meteor or volcanic rock, round, ball-like, a gnarled blackish body about the size of a small car, all submerged in a furious fire of red (close to the body),then yellow and bluish of constant spurts, leaving a trail of flames about the length of the body itself with a long, dense,oil-gray trail. it was flying steadily straight and level, as if controlled. my van was going about 35, and the object's speed was slightly more, about 40mph. it was just above the palm trees on the road, and i could see the fronds wilt from the heat as the object passed over them. the height would have been between 50 to a hundred feet. the ufo continued down the line of palm trees along the road curving to the right along the park with the seashore close by. it never varied in speed or direction, and continued to sound a raucous popping/crackling, sounds so close together it was like a 'roar'. it continued also emitting a profusion of bright eruptions of flames from constant small explosions on the exterior of the black ball, so dense that the body was generally obscured, while leaving from that bright tail of flame a dense smelly oily black/gray trail (black then changing into gray as it dissipated). i watched for approximately a minute while driving (i checked my watch) as it continued out of sight.When i stopped i noticed the heat on the side of my van and the greasiness on my face and the van. there was still a gagging effluence in the air. what most impressed me was the torrid nature of the object as it did not seem a 'vehicle' with the controlled ease of the flight. i opened the newspaper the next day expecting commentary to find nothing. i never reported it as it was so unusual as to not fit into any category of a 'standard' ufo. my hawaiian friends said it was not an unknown phenomenon and probably a disembodied 'kahuna' checking the aina.