Twenty people died, over 20 others seriously injured, after a Busia-bound bus collided head-on with a truck at Mbaruk area near Gilgil on Nakuru-Nairobi highway on Saturday 2am (May 13).
The bus, Flashlink, which belongs to the Superhighway Sacco, was operating on a route, which was out of its bounds.
According to the Sacco’s permit, the 52-seater bus should be plying Githurai-Nairobi CBD route; and not long distance travel.
A survivor, who sought anonymity, said the bus, whose registration number is KCG 992C, was overloaded at the time the accident occurred.
“The bus was packed to capacity; and still there were a number of conductors standing,” said the survivor.
The survivor said he and other passengers had been booked into Kawere bus but the conductors forced them to board the ill-fated bus at around 11pm on Friday, March 12, at the Machakos bus station.
Their journey to Busia, he said, began at midnight.
Another survivor, Rorbet Otieno, said the driver of the bus had fallen out with the conductors, while in transit, after they (conductors) called him out for reckless driving. The passengers too complained about the driver’s recklessness, but he would not listen, recounted Otieno.
On reaching Mbaruk, near Gilgil, the driver of the bus attempted to overtake a truck heading to Nakuru, when he rammed into an oncoming truck, killing 19 passengers on the spot and leaving scores injured.
Another survivor, namely Electine Auma, said she was heading for her father’s burial in Busia.
The accident survivors were rushed to St. Mary’s Mission Hospital in Gilgil, while bodies were moved to a mortuary in the same health facility.
Confirming the incident, Nakuru Police Commandment, Hassan Barua, said investigations into the fatal crash have been launched.
Barua said the bus was operating on the route illegally because it was not permitted for long distance ferrying of passengers.
Barua urged motorists to be careful on roads, especially at night, to avoid accidents that have, of late, claimed tens of lives.
Rescue teams that responded to the early Saturday accident include: Nakuru County Ambulance and the Red Cross.
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