Over 20 killed in Kenya Dam burst disaster

Clay Curtis
May 10, 2018

A dam burst in Kenya's rift valley after weeks of heavy rain, killing at least 27 people and causing "huge destruction", officials said Thursday.

Police chief Gideon Kibunjah said 36 people had been hospitalised.

The burst happened in Solai, Nakuru county, 120 miles northwest of the capital, Nairobi, late on Wednesday.

Local reports suggest roughly 100 homes have been affected, including properties on the Nyakinyua Farm that borders the reservoir.

Eyewitnesses at a nearby shopping centre told the news site they heard a huge explosion before water gushed out of the Patel dam.

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The incident raises the already high death toll in Kenya from floods due to seasonal rain.

Governor Lee Kinyanjui said Nakuru County was working closely with KRCS as well as the security agencies to coordinate rescue missions.

Confirming the deaths, the Kenya Red Cross Society (KRCS) reported that thirty-nine people had been rescued in a joint operation with the county government and were admitted to Bahati sub-county and Nakuru County Referral Hospital. Local officials say the full extent of the damage is not yet clear.

At least 140 people have died in the last two months and more than 260,000 displaced as raging floods wreak havoc across the country.

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