Mombasa, Friday, November 17, 2017 KNA
Passengers traveling to and from Nairobi with the Standard Gauge Railway (SGR) Madaraka Express suffer excruciating delays on the highways in Mombasa because of severe vehicular traffic congestion.
Mombasa County Commissioner Evans Achoki who chaired a crisis meeting in his office on Friday with stakeholders, said train commuters suffered a lot in the face of heavy traffic.
The Administrator directed Traffic Police and the County Traffic Marshals to move with speed and ease congestion as holidaymakers flocked to the coastal city ahead of the December holidays.
New measures have been announced to try to tackle traffic chaos along the Mombasa-Nairobi highway.
“All the cargo trucks leaving the port of Mombasa are required to keep left and the traffic marshals would be in place to direct traffic,” he said, adding that 24 hour recovery, towing and emergency breakdown services would be on the roadsides.
Achoki said more Traffic Police and County Traffic Marshals would be deployed to enforce the new measures to try to cut congestions around the Makupa-Kibarani-Changamwe roundabouts.
SGR Liaison Officer Sam Ngeti said the bad condition of the roads leading to the Miritini SGR station and the recent rains have compounded the travelers’ misery.
“The SGR trains are fully booked but the commuters have problems in accessing the Miritini Station and some miss their train ride to Nairobi’ he told the stakeholders forum,” he said.
He said the SGR has arranged for the Public Service Vehicles to pick passengers from the Central Business District to the main SGR Station but the busses often arrived late due to the traffic jam on the way.
The Kenya National Highways Authority (KeNHA) Regional Official Eng. Joseph Makori says the situation was aggravated by trucks parking along the roads due to shortage of parking space in the coastal city.
“Between 4, 000 and 5, 000 trucks ply the Mombasa-Nairobi Highway daily. This has led to shortage of parking space in Mombasa,” he said, adding that the situation forced drivers of the heavy duty vehicles to park along the road shoulders contributing to the daily monster traffic jam.