Flash floods in coastal areas of Kenya have claimed several lives, damaged schools and destroyed sewage systems, leading to fears of disease outbreaks, according to officials and local residents.
Affected areas include Changamwe, Kisauni, Kongowea and Likoni estates in Mombasa, where flood waters have submerged large areas, making it difficult for residents to access clean water. Pit latrines have also been submerged in Ukunda in Kwale County, which neighbors Mombasa.
Residents depending on boreholes for their water supply have called on the government to intervene after sewage found its way into their source of clean water. Public health officers were on high alert. Piles of filth and waste from the several open dumpsites in the town had also been swept by rain water into residential areas.
Seven people have died since the heavy rains started pounding the area in early October and four others were seriously injured when their public van was swept away by flood-waters and plunged into Rare River, Kilifi County. Rescue personnel from the Kenya Red Cross Society (KRCS) and the local administration have been assisting those affected by the floods.
Many roads have been cut off, notably in Wundanyi and Taita-Taveta districts. The main road from Mombasa leading to Tanzania became impassable on October 14after a section in Mangwei near Msambweni, Kwale County, collapsed, leaving several trucks stranded. (IRIN)