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Dramatic rescue of man stuck in floods

EASTERN
By Cyrus Ombati | December 2nd 2019

 

The police chopper that saved one Vincent Musila who was trapped in River Athi. [Courtesy]

A man who had been trapped by floods for four days in Athi River was finally rescued by the police.

The man, identified as Vincent Musila, had been stuck on a temporary "island" at Fourteen Falls in River Athi as the water levels kept rising.

After receiving distress calls about the stranded man, a police chopper was deployed to go to his rescue.

Kenya Police Airwing Commandant Rodgers Mbithi said they received a call about a man who was marooned on an island and could be swept away anytime as the water levels kept rising.

“Heavy rains being experienced in the area made it difficult for the man to wade through the waters,” said Mbithi, adding that two people were rescued in Athi River and Kilimambogo.

“We have choppers that are on standby to help in this rescue mission,” he said.

As the rescue mission went on, onlookers praised the police's efforts. Videos on social media showed one of the men on the decreasing patch of land as the river rose.

Stranded

“Many thanks to our police and the Airwing department for heeding my call and coming to the rescue one Vincent Musila who had been stuck for four days in the middle of Athi River,” said Mbithi.

The commandant also thanked residents who had tried to save Musila.

The helicopter carefully made its way to where the stranded man was and he was whisked away to safety.

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Earlier in the day, the Kenya Red Cross issued an update on the ongoing rescue operations following heavy rainfall in many parts of the country.

Eight people, three in Yatta, Machakos and five in Kibwezi, Makueni, all living along Athi River were reported marooned following a downpour.

Further, a 35-year-old man who had been reported to have been swept away while attempting to cross Kaiti River in Makueni was rescued by Kenya Red Cross and taken to a nearby health facility.

At least 120 people have died following heavy rains being experienced in the country since October. According to the United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) the victims include 72 who lost their lives in the West Pokot County landslide.

Roads and bridges have been damaged, hampering effective humanitarian response in affected areas.

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