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Transport paralyzed as road is cut off by flash floods

Transport has been paralyzed along the Garissa-Modogashe Road after a section of the road was washed away by floods following a heavy downpour on Sunday morning.

The floods also ran across villages leaving at least 70 households homeless.

By this afternoon, close to 150 small vehicles, buses and trucks were still stuck at both sides of the road as Kenya National Highway Authority (KeNHA) engineers in the county worked on an alternative diversion to allow transport resume.

Speaking after touring the cut road just after Ohio market centre, North Eastern regional commissioner John Otieno said that the road was a major gateway to Wajir and Mandera counties, therefore the relevant road bodies will work around the clock to make sure that transport resumes as quick as possible.

“There is an indication of extensive damage that requires resources to bring back the road to its normal status, however we have put contingency measures to make sure that vehicles can be able to move across in the next few hours as repairs continue,” Otieno said.

“We have mobilized machineries from KeNHA, the China Construction Company, that is the contractor working on the LAPSSET project to bring additional equipment to this side so that we facilitate movement through these counties and save our transporters from more loss,” he added.

Otieno said that the government will respond quickly to help all persons who have been affected by the floods while thanking the Kenya Red Cross for moving in quickly to assist residents affected by the floods.

KeNHA regional director for North Eastern Engineer Hannington Kidagisa asked the public to be patient as they worked to ensure that normalcy is restored.

The engineer further noted that the repair of the road will cost between Sh 100 to 150 million.

“We are trying to reinstate a temporal diversion which will be complete in the next 2 to 3 hours as we continue to repair the main road,” Kidagisa said.

“This road is part of A13 and it’s the main highway that links Garissa to Wajir and further to Mandera and it’s the only section which is tarmacked,” he added.

Truck drivers and passengers we spoke to said that they had been stuck on the road for over 12 hours without food and water and called on the government to expedite the process of repairing the road.

By Erick Kyalo


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