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Mets warn of possible landslides as El Nino beckons

The Department of Disaster and Risk Management in Baringo County has warned local residents residing in landslide- and flood-prone areas to be vigilant during the anticipated El Nino rains.

County Acting Director for Disaster Michael Baimet, who spoke to KNA on Tuesday, noted that warning signs of a looming calamity have been experienced in high and low-lying areas.

Baimet was referring to incidences in the last two weeks where raging winds have destroyed homesteads, power lines, and blocked major roads from fallen trees and electricity poles, thus endangering the lives of residents and causing hindrance to transportation.

He stated that his department for this entire period has been engaging locals and concerned authorities in opening up roads blocked by huge falling trees and removing debris from vandalized homes and schools whose rooftops were blown away by winds.

The director, who singled out Sacho, Tenges, Marigat, and Illchamus Wards as the most risk-prone areas, warned that expected enhanced rains are likely to wreck more havoc, and thus there is a need for residents to remain alert and move to safer grounds immediately if they notice any slight danger to avert unnecessary loss of lives and property.

“This entire week, all through Sunday, will be a rainy week; hence, I am advising residents to be observant and report to us on time of any incidences so that we can be able to dispense it in a timely manner,” he said.

Baimet encouraged the community to play a crucial role in mitigating themselves against such disasters, noting that they can manage issues like not planting trees near their homesteads and power lines in order to avert hazards that may be caused during the El Nino period.

The director, however, said that the county government has instituted adequate measures to counter any eventualities and that they are ready to offer food and non-food items to affected families.

He added that his office has teamed up with partners like the Kenya Red Cross Society, UNICEF, and ministerial departments to support residents who might be affected by iron sheets and aqua tabs, especially in areas where water quality due to flooding is a challenge.

By Benson Kelio and Joshua Kibet

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