A section of Machakos residents are now calling for the Kenya National Highways Authority to put markings and bumps along the Machakos-Kitui road to avoid accidents along the busy route.
They claim the steep road which runs near the Machakos Primary School and the busy Grogan light industrial area has claimed the lives of several people in the past since due to lack of physical safety features.
They are also appealing to Machakos Governor, Dr. Alfred Mutua to order the Chinese company that was contracted to revamp the Kangundo-Tala-Konza road to install traffic lights at the intersection within the town’s CBD to address the confusion which has become synonymous at the site especially during rush hours.
The 64 kilometre stretch of road was completed in 2018 by the Chinese Wu Yi Company to help ease the movement of motorists intending to link with Mombasa highway from Kangundo town.
Speaking to KNA on Friday, the road users term the two sites as death traps lying to claim lives unless drastic steps are taken to address the matter.
“We are appealing to the county government of Machakos to ensure the Machakos-Kitui tarmac road is marked and safety bumps erected to deal with increased cases of accidents along the route. Pedestrians crossing the road do so at their own risk due to speeding vehicles since the route does not even have any zebra crossings for road users,” said Patrick Kimongo, a bodaboda rider who plies his trade near the Machakos primary School.
He also claimed that previously there were zebra crossings and bumps on the steep ascent but after the road was renovated the contractors did not remark it.
Mercy Kavata, a fruit vendor who plies her trade near the busy road says the road is a black spot especially for pupils crossing the highway from the nearby Machakos Primary school.
She blames the contractors for ignoring to put zebra crossings in the section and said the neglect has exposed children to grave danger from speeding vehicles and freewheeling truck drivers.
Kenya loses at least 3,000 people on her roads every year making her among the leading countries in the world with the highest highway carnage.
Four out of every five accidents in Kenya are caused by reckless driving, according to the National Transport and Safety Authority. This includes freewheeling in an attempt to save on fuel and flouting speed limits.
By Samuel Maina/Silvester Mutinda/Everlyne Mwende