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Two fishermen die in boat fire

By James Omoro | Published Thu, December 7th 2017 at 00:00, Updated December 6th 2017 at 18:54 GMT +3
Fishermen's boats on the shores of Lake Victoria. Two fishermen are missing after a boat accident on Tuesday night. [File, Standard]

Two fishermen are missing after a fishing expedition in Lake Victoria on Tuesday night.

They were cooking using a jiko when the boat caught fire, forcing them to plunge into the water to escape the flames.

Two fishermen, Wycliffe Odoyo, 30, and Calvince Otieno, 28, managed to escape. However, their colleagues Joseph Aduda, 30, and Kevin Odera, 24 are still missing. They were travelling from Masara to Nyandiwa beach in Suba South sub-county when the incident happened.

Nyandiwa Beach Management Unit chairman Peter Otieno said the fishermen dived into the water to escape the fierce fire following a huge explosion.

“Our two colleagues are still missing. They were escaping fire that caught their boat during a fishing expedition,” said Otieno.

It all started when the boat ran out of petrol. One of the fishermen took a jerrycan of petrol to fuel the engine.

However, due to strong winds, the petrol caught fire and there was an explosion.

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“Our colleagues were preparing supper when the tragedy occurred. The fishermen had no option but to plunge into the water. We were able rescue the two but two others are still missing,” Otieno said.

Homa Bay County Beach Management Network chairman Edward Oremo warned fishermen against cooking in their boats while fishing.

“I urge my colleagues to stop lighting fire in their boats to avoid these cases,” said Oremo.

Homa Bay County police boss Marius Tum said: “Two fishermen are still missing but rescue efforts are going on,” said Tum.

This comes just days after a Tanzanian and two Kenyan fishermen drowned in the lake.

The Tanzanian identified as Nyang’ope Jasirati, aged 30, and the Kenyans Martin Kieti, 41 and Joseph Kososi,33, died near Rusinga Island in Suba North.

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