35 people killed after dam bursts in Kenya

Public TV English
Public TV English
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NAIROBI: At least 35 people have been killed while dozens of others have gone missing after a dam burst in southern Kenya as the country has been facing weeks of heavy rains and devastating flash floods, CNN reported.

Rescue teams have been digging through the mud and debris trying to find the survivors near Mai Mahiu in Kenya’s Nakuru County, Rescue teams are digging through the mud and debris trying to find survivors near Mai Mahiu, in Kenya’s Nakuru County, Governor Susan Kihika of Nakuru County, warning that the death toll could increase significantly.

The incident comes at a time when 103 people have been killed due to flooding in Kenya and forcing thousands of residents to evacuate from their homes since March, according to government spokesperson Isaac Maigua Mwaura, CNN reported.

Susan Kihika stressed a serious situation was unfolding in Mai Mahiu as floodwaters in Kenya swept away people and houses. She said, “We are trying to get a handle on the situation but it’s a bit overwhelming but we’re doing the best we can especially to reach those who have been carried away because we hope that some are still alive”.

Kihika said access to Mai Mahiu had been difficult as part of the road had been cut off from recent heavy rains. Teams have been involved in clearing debris as they try to reach survivors and pull out bodies.

On Monday, the Kenya Red Cross Society said several people were rushed to a health facility in Mai Mahiu due to the flash floods impacting Kamuchiri village. The group said, “The floodwaters are reported to have originated from a nearby river that broke its banks.”

Kenya witnessed heavy rain since mid-March. However, downpours have intensified over the past week, resulting in mass flooding, according to CNN report.

In a post on X, IFRC Secretary General and CEO Jagan Chapagain stated, “Kenya is facing a worsening flood crisis due to the combined effects of El Nino and the ongoing March-May 2024 long rains”.

Chapagain added, “Since November 2023, El Nino triggered devastating floods and river overflows, causing more than a hundred deaths and widespread damage.” Some 131,450 people have been impacted as floods swept through almost half of Kenya.

Images and video from Nairobi showcase people stranded on rooftops or salvaging what they can from homes destroyed by the flash floods. Other video showcases vast flooding around the Tana River, with large parts of the surrounding area underwater.

Furthermore, roads, buildings and vehicles have been submerged due to rains in Kenya. Kenya’s Ministry of Education on Monday said that all primary and secondary schools would postpone the start of the new school term for one week until May 6.

On Sunday, the Kenya Red Cross Society said 23 people had been rescued and others were missing after a boat capsized at Kona Punda while it was heading to Mororo, CNN reported.

As of Friday, the group announced that it had rescued over 300 people since the rains began in March. Heavy rains in East Africa have also impacted Tanzania and Burundi. (ANI)

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