Kisumu accident survivors recount their lucky escape

Friday, February 23rd, 2024 06:40 | By
Wreckage of the PSV matatu and lorry that collided head-on on Katito-Homa Bay road at Nyalunya area, on Wednesday evening. PHOTO/NOVEN AWITI

Survivors of the Wednesday tragic accident on the Katito-Homa Bay road, that claimed eight lives, have recounted details of the fatal crash.

The survivors, including two minors and four adults, are currently admitted at the Jaramogi Oginga Odinga Teaching and Referral Hospital where they are receiving treatment for various injuries.

Hospital’s chief executive Richard Lesiyampe said eight victims were taken to the facility on Wednesday evening, however, one person succumbed while undergoing treatment yesterday, bringing the death toll to seven.

Police confirmed that five people died on the spot after a tipper lorry ferrying sand had a tyre burst and rammed into the PSV vehicle.

Four male adults, including the matatu driver and another female died instantly.

The accident occurred at Nyalunya area in Nyakach sub-county when the lorry driver, lost control of the vehicle and collided head-on with the matatu killing five on the spot.

Conslata Anyango and her toddler are among the lucky survivors.  She narrated how they miraculously escaped death when the 14-seater matatu they were travelling in rammed into the oncoming lorry that lost control leading to the accident.

She was travelling from Kisumu town to Nyakach before her journey was cut short by the terrific accident.

The 27-year-old said her child is yet to regain memory following accident.

“We thank God for saving our lives. Many people died while others got injured in the process,” she said.

Anyango recalls that the lorry, which was moving towards Katito township developed a tyre burst and lost control, swerving to the other side of the road where it collided head -on with the Homa Bay-bound matatu.

Nyakach Sub-County Police Commander John Losia said preliminary investigations pointed to speeding, leading to the accident which could have been avoided.

“If the driver was not speeding he could have navigated and avoided the head-on collision with the lorry which had a tyre burst before it lost control,” Losia said. The bodies were moved to Nyakach Sub-County (Pap Onditi) Hospital mortuary.

Meanwhile, Kisumu Governor Anyang’ Nyong’o appealed for urgent investigations into the rising number of accidents on the roads in Nyanza region.

Mounts crackdown

At the same time, Nyong’o called on the police to mount serious crackdown on vehicles flouting traffic regulations as a measure to help tame the rising road carnages.

Governor, while condoling with the bereaved families, regretted that many people have lost their lives in the region in the recent past due to road accidents that could have been avoided.

 “Traffic police must ruthlessly crack down on unroadworthy public service vehicles. It is sad that we still have unqualified drivers using faulty vehicles despite the many road blocks mounted by police on our roads,” he said.

The latest accident comes barely three weeks after another crash at Othoo area in Muhoroni sub-county along the Kisumu-Nairobi highway killed 11 people and left several people injured.

“These accidents are no doubt being caused by recklessness of drivers who have refused to hear our pleas to embrace traffic decorum while on the roads. We have shed too much blood on the roads and the traffic police must now stop this madness,” he added.

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