At least 4 killed in Sobea crash as matatu rams lorry

Killer Sobea-Mau Summit stretch continues to claim lives.

IN SUMMARY

  • Hundreds of people have died and many others injured since January in accidents in the Sobea-Mau Summit  section of the highway.

  • The notorious section, which has become synonymous with crashes, stretches from Sobea, Salgaa, Migaa, Sachangwan and Mau Summit.

  • It also includes Jolly Farm and Mkinyai areas.

  • Truck drivers have been blamed for the crashes and the government is constructing a dual carriageway at the killer stretch.

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At least four people have been killed in an accident involving a 14-seater shuttle and a lorry at Sobea area on Nakuru-Eldoret highway.

Eight others were injured in the morning collision that cut short the 2NK-shuttle passengers’ journey to Nakuru town.

MAIZE

Rongai Officer Commanding Police Division Japhet Kioko on Friday confirmed the crash and the fatalities.

"The 14-seater lost control and rammed the truck that had been parked on the road side after it developed a mechanical problem," he said.

The driver of the matatu escaped after the incident. The injured were taken to Nakuru Level Five hospital for treatment.

Mr Noah Simiyu, the driver of the lorry, told the Nation he was ferrying maize from Kampala to Mombasa.

Wreck of the shuttle. It was towed to Salgaa Police Station. PHOTO | JOSEPH OPENDA | NATION MEDIA GROUP 

"The vehicle had a problem so I parked it on the roadside. I put a hazard on and other life savers before going back to sleep inside the truck," he said.

"l was distracted by a bang and when l came out l found that a the 2NK shuttle had rammed the lorry," he added.

The wreckage of the matatu was towed to Salgaa Police Station.

KILLER STRETCH

Hundreds of people have died and thousands injured since January in accidents at the Sobea-Mau Summit section of the highway that goes all the way to Uganda.

The notorious section, which has become synonymous with crashes, stretches from Sobea, Salgaa, Migaa, Sachangwan and Mau Summit.

It also includes Jolly Farm and Mkinyai areas.

Truck drivers have been blamed for the crashes and the government is constructing a dual carriageway at the killer stretch.

The shuttle was estensively damaged. PHOTO | SILA KIPLAGAT | NATION MEDIA GROUP 

The Friday collision came hours after one person died and eight others were injured in a crash that involved four vehicles at Sachangwan area near Salgaa .

The on Thursday evening accident involved a 14-seater matatu, two trailers and a private saloon car.

According to witnesses, the North Rift Shuttle, which was heading to Nakuru from Eldoret, lost control and rammed the saloon car before hitting the trailers.

One trailer was heading to Eldoret from Nakuru at the time of the crash while the other was heading in the opposite direction.

8 INJURED

The saloon car was also heading to Nakuru.

"The 14-seater matatu that was speeding lost control before hitting the other vehicles. It hit the saloon car from behind before it rammed the trailer," said a witness, Mr Solomon Cheruiyot.

Molo Traffic Base Commander Moses Nderitu, who confirmed the accident, said the man who died was a passenger in the shuttle.

“The passenger died on the spot whereas eight other people sustained injuries and were rushed to Nakuru Level Five and Molo Sub-County hospitals for treatment,” said Mr Nderitu.

Police inspect the wreck of the shuttle at the scene on August 31, 2017. It was towed to Salgaa Police Station. PHOTO | SILA KIPLAGAT | NATION MEDIA GROUP 

He said preliminary investigations indicated that the two vehicles—  the shuttle and the saloon car— were speeding when the crash happened.

"The saloon car, which was extensively damaged, and the other two have been towed to Molo Police Station," said Mr Nderitu.

The police boss urged motorists and other road users to be careful and to adhere to traffic rules to avoid loss of lives.

The body of the deceased was taken to Molo Sub-County mortuary. The crash caused a heavy traffic snarl-up along the busy highway.

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