At least 36 people, including seven children, have been killed by landslides triggered by unusually heavy rains in northwestern Kenya, a local official said on Saturday.
The downpour began on Friday in West Pokot County, which borders Uganda, and worsened overnight, causing flooding and mudslides that swept away four bridges and left the worst-affected village, Muino, unaccessible by road.
“We can confirm that the number of those dead has sadly reached 36. Some people who we thought were lost have been found dead,” Samuel Poghisio, a senator from the county, told Reuters by phone.
“More people are marooned and the entire village is at risk of being wiped out by the floods,” the county’s governor, John Lonyangapuo, told Reuters by phone as he waited for a helicopter to transport him to survey the damage.
He added that rescue efforts were underway in the area, where more than 500 vehicles are stuck on roads damaged by the landslides.
Eleven of the people killed were in the same house, Lonyangapuo said.
Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyatta said in a statement that he had deployed rescue personnel from various agencies including the army and the police to try to stop the “further loss of lives.”
Researchers have warned that warming oceans are causing unpredictable weather patterns in East Africa.
Heavy rains and floods have killed more than 50 people and forced hundreds of thousands of people from their homes across East Africa, aid groups said earlier this month.
Kenya is experiencing a heavier than usual rainy season, the Kenya Meteorological Department said in early November.
'Safari Doctors' help isolated villagers in remote parts of KenyaResponding to the need for health services in remote areas of the country, a Kenyan association created sea-faring mobile clinics in 2015 to provide ... Reports
Kenya becomes 3rd African nation to introduce world’s first malaria vaccineKenya on Friday added the world’s first malaria vaccine to the routine immunization schedule for children under two, becoming the third country ... Healthy Living
Kenya’s first crude oil export sparks demands over revenue sharingKenya exported its first crude oil on Monday, amid pointed speeches by local leaders asking the government to stick to its commitment to share ... Energy
Kenya: 3 militants killed, 2 officers wounded in attackKenya police say three suspected extremists were killed by border police whose vehicle was blown up by an improvised bomb.A senior police official ... World News