Motorists spend 14 hours in jam on Nairobi-Mombasa highway

Monday November 14 2016

Stranded passengers stranded outside Coast Bus

Stranded passengers stranded outside Coast Bus Company's booking offices in Mwembe Tayari after their bus was delayed on November 14, 2016. PHOTO | WACHIRA MWANGI | NATION MEDIA GROUP 

LUCY MKANYIKA
By LUCY MKANYIKA
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MOHAMED AHMED
By MOHAMED AHMED
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Hundreds of passengers and motorists were stranded on Mombasa Road for more than 14 hours on Sunday night and Monday morning.

The mess happened on a 10-kilometre stretch between Bachuma and Taru, on the Mombasa-Nairobi highway.

The snarl-up was caused by a diversion around Taru, where part of the road is under repair.

Light rains made the ground muddy, making it harder for drivers to access the road, causing the long gridlock.

NIGHT IN COLD

“I have spent the night in the cold. All my plans have been ruined,” Fredrick Wachira, a traveller heading to Mombasa, told Nation.co.ke in Voi, Taita-Taveta County.

Another passenger, Mohamed Abeid, said: “I had not expected this. We have been stuck here. We cannot tell if the place is secured enough because cases of people being attacked while in such a jam have been on the rise,” he said.

By 10am Monday, traffic police had been deployed to help untangle the vehicular jam along the busy highway.

In Mombasa, passengers scheduled to travel in the morning spent hours at booking offices, waiting for buses to transport them to destinations such as Nairobi.

BUSES FAIL

Dozens of passengers sat outside the Coast Bus Company booking offices in Mwembe Tayari helplessly waiting for their scheduled buses to pick them up.

“I have some perishable goods; I was supposed to travel to Nairobi at 8am but it’s almost 11am now and we are still here,” said Janet Wafula, a businesswoman.

Coast Bus Company's Mombasa branch manager Adil Mirza said it was disappointing experiencing the same problem each year. 

“The roads are so pathetic, we are doing all our best but all other stakeholders are letting us down. Buses are arriving now, they have inconvenienced our business and there is no communication on what they are doing to address the problem,” he said.