Nine people – including three Kenya Defence Forces (KDF) soldiers – have perished in two separate road crashes along the Mombasa-Nairobi highway.
In the first incident which happened at Kanga near Mtito Andei town, five people dead on the spot when two cars collided head on at about 10am Sunday.
Another person later succumbed to injuries bringing the death toll to six.
“The Mombasa-bound personal car was overtaking a truck when the accident happened,” Makueni County Commissioner Mohammed Maalim said.
He added that those who were injured were rushed to Voi General Hospital while the vehicles were towed to Mtito Andei Police Station.
In the second incident which happened at around 11.30am Sunday at Mlima Kiu near Salama market – some 250 kilometres from the first incident - a KDF truck overturned and rolled downhill after its driver lost control.
“One officer died on the spot, two others succumbed to injuries they had sustained while being rushed to Machakos County Referral Hospital, seven officers sustained serious injuries and were admitted to Machakos County Referral Hospital while another officer survived unscathed when the [driver of the] Mombasa-bound KDF truck lost control and [it] overturned as it went down Mlima Kiu hill,” Mukaa OCPD Charles Muthui told the Nation.
“The truck was traveling from Kahawa Baracks to Mombasa when the accident happened,” one KDF officer who was among the first responders who came to rescue his colleagues told Daily Nation.
He spoke on condition of anonymity since protocol bars him from speaking on behalf of the force.
The soldiers’ bodies were taken to Machakos County Referral Hospital mortuary while the truck was towed to Salama Police Station.
The two crashes happened hours after another freak one in Wote Town on Saturday involving two motorcycles which left a Makueni prison warden dead.
This also comes at a time when there is heightened campaign on road safety.
The Makueni warden who was riding a motorcycle collided head on with a bodaboda rider.
“One of the riders was trying to overtake a vehicle when the accident occurred. The prison biker sustained head injuries. He was pronounced dead shortly after he was admitted to Makueni County Referral Hospital,” Makueni OCPD Bosita Omukolongolo said of the Saturday evening incident.
Mr Maalim urged motorists to be extra careful and to resist the temptation to rush to their destinations during the Christmas festive season.