Twelve people, including a man and his wife died and nine others seriously injured after a matatu and a lorry collided on Tuesday night along the Nairobi-Nakuru highway.
According to witnesses, the 18-seater matatu belonging to the Royal Mirage Sacco was heading to Busia while the Mitsubishi canter lorry was ferrying green maize to Nairobi's Wakulima market.
Police said preliminary probe indicated the lorry was overtaking other vehicles when the accident occurred at Kimende trading centre, a few minutes before 11pm.
Uplands deputy police boss Musa Omari, confirmed that six people died on the spot, three died while being taken to Kijabe Mission Hospital which is a few kilometres away from where the accident happened.
UPLANDS FUNERAL HOME
Three others died shortly after arriving at the hospital and their bodies were taken to Uplands Funeral Home while the wreckages were towed to Uplands Police station.
Mr Omari said survivors, who suffered multiple injuries, were seven men, including the lorry driver and his passenger and two girls.
“The survivors were seriously injured and could not give their accounts to the police. The lorry was overtaking when it collided with the matatu and the impact plunged both vehicles into a ditch,” Mr Omari said on Wednesday.
Mr Njoroge Kamande, one of the witnesses, and who was also among the rescuers said it took good Samaritans and the police more than two hours to rescue the survivors and retrieve bodies, saying some of them had been trapped in the wreckage.
“We had to look for tools like an axe to dismantle the wreckage because most of the victims had been trapped inside. It was an emotional task because they kept crying for help,” Mr Kamande told the Nation.
According to the witnesses, during the rescue operation, a man who later died while he was being taken the hospital said that he was aboard the matatu with his wife and a child and police were yesterday seeking to establish whether his child was among the two girls who survived.
"We are yet to establish who the parents of the two children are, and whether any of them survived because they did not have any identification documents,” he said.
Mr Omari has advised drivers to be cautions while using the highway especially at Kamandura, Ngarariga, Uplands, Kimende, Kinale all the way Naivasha since the road is narrow and slippery.