29 December 2012

Kenya: 10 People Drown As Floods Wreak Havoc

Nairobi — Ten people drowned early on Saturday morning after their houses were swept away by raging floods in Keiyo Valley.

According to the area District Commissioner Arthur Bunde, four of those killed were members of the same family.

The Kenya Red Cross Society (KRCS) which immediately moved in to help with the rescue efforts said the incident occurred around 3am sweeping away houses while others were left submerged.

KRCS said the early Saturday downpour left over 200 families affected in Kaptarakwa, Kabechei and Enego areas.

Together with the Kerio South Provincial Administration and locals, the society continued with the rescue efforts to save people feared to be still trapped in the mud.

The rescue efforts were however hampered by the ongoing rains in the affected areas.

"The KRCS is working with the locals in the rescue efforts which have been slowed down by heavy rains, impassable roads and mud. It's feared that many could still be trapped as the society has continued to receive calls from other affected people and on social media," KRCS stated.

A temporary shelter was set up at Torongon Primary School to host over 70 families asked to move from areas identified as high risk with the ongoing rains expected to continue through to January.

Alerts were issued to families living in areas prone to landslides and heavy flooding to move to higher ground.

Rescue missions were also ongoing to move people to safer areas after the infamous River Nyando burst its banks.

Since the December rains began, many Kenyans have been affected by heavy flooding and landslides, a common phenomenon during rainy seasons in the country.

In Nairobi, Mathare, South 'C' and Imara Daima areas were the most affected, according to KRCS.

KRCS also called for caution by motorists driving around Naivasha, Nyeri, Iten, Kericho, Eldoret and Nanyuki where visibility remains poor and roads slippery due to the heavy downpour.

The meteorological department forecast that the heavy rains will continue to January.

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