10 more lives lost in road accidents

Noah Cheploen, Mathew Ndung’u and Dorcas Mbatiah @PeopleDailyKe

Road accidents at the weekend claimed 10 more lives after seven people died on the spot while two others succumbed to their injuries in hospital when a matatu they were travelling in rammed an oncoming truck on the Nakuru-Eldoret highway.

One other person died and three others seriously injured in an accident involving a saloon car and a tractor on the Thika-Garrissa road on Saturday night.

The Nakuru-Eldoret highway accident brings the total number of people who have lost their lives along the busy road that links Western Kenya and the capital city to 43 in the last one month alone. Rift Valley Traffic Enforcement officer Zero Arome said the accident happened when a 14-seater matatu tried to overtake another vehicle before colliding with a truck.

The accident happened a few kilometres from Makutano junction. The injured were rushed to Eldama Ravine District Hospital while those with severe injuries were taken to Moi Teaching and Referral Hospital for specialised treatment.

In Thika, the accident was caused by the salon car that is said to have been overtaking and collided head-on with an oncoming tractor. The deceased was pronounced dead on arrival at Thika Level 5 Hospital where he was rushed together with three other passengers. Thika base commander Michael Lemaiyan urged motorists to be vigilant on the road especially during the ongoing festivities.

The car was towed to Makongeni Police Station as investigations on the accident were launched. Elsewhere, police in Meru county in conjunction with the National Transport and Safety Authority (NTSA) have put on notice motorists operating in the area by cautioning them against flouting traffic rules during this festive season.

The Meru County Police Commandant Nelson Taliti and NTSA commander in charge of Eastern Region Joseph Gichungi said they have already set strategies meant to curb the occurrence of unnecessary accidents with police officers being placed in strategic points in a bid to arrest any suspect flouting traffic laws.

They regretted that many innocent people lose their lives while others are maimed during the festive season due to accidents occasioned by reckless and careless driving especially by those under the influence of alcohol.

The duo said many residents travel from urban to their rural homes and vice versa leading to heavy traffic jams in most roads with many partying until odd hours before driving themselves home drunk and in the process endangering the lives of other passengers and road users.

“Crackdown on all motorists flouting traffic rules and regulations during this Christmas has began in earnest in order to prevent the occurrence of unnecessary accidents on our roads. Faulty vehicles will be impounded with the suspects being arrested and prosecuted immediately,” said Taliti.

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