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Wednesday, May 29, 2024

Flood in Kenya. People jumped over crocodiles

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Kenya has recently been struggling with disastrous floods. Tourists were evacuated from the Masai Mara National Nature Reserve on Thursday. However, the consequences of the violent weather are felt throughout the country – darkness reigned due to the lack of electricity. So far, the disaster has killed nearly 200 people.

Kenya was plunged into darkness on Thursday evening after a nationwide power outage. Darkness enveloped Nairobi's Jomo Kenyatta International Airport. The failure occurred a few minutes before 6 p.m. local time, informed the country's main electricity supplier, Kenya Power. In a statement released shortly after the outage, the utility said the power outage occurred due to a “system disruption.”

The company attributes the power outage problems to strong winds and heavy rains, which led to flooding. The country has been struggling with them for some time. So far, 188 people have died due to the violent weather, according to the government's official statement.

They are stuck in a nature reserve

About 100 tourists were stranded in the Masai Mara National Wildlife Refuge in Narok County, where the Talek River burst its banks on Wednesday, flooding at least 14 camps.

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Among those trapped was a Canadian newlywed couple who were on their honeymoon there.

– I was very scared, I looked around and wondered: oh my God, will this river ever stop flowing? – said 34-year-old tourist Dan Pasmans.

“People jumped over crocodiles”

Lonneke Sluijs feared for her and her children's safety as floods flooded the area.

“People were jumping over the crocodiles and the security was panicking,” said her 12-year-old son, Sijm Sluijs.

Staff and guests were safely evacuated on Thursday and moved to nearby hotels, according to reserve staff.

The famous Masai Mara is a popular destination for tourists and the habitat of the so-called The Big Five, i.e. lions, elephants, rhinos, leopards and buffaloes, but also giraffes, hippos and cheetahs, animals which, according to local authorities, also suffer huge losses during floods.

Floods in KenyaDANIEL IRUNGU/PAP/EPA

More rainfall on the horizon, a cyclone is approaching

The Kenya Meteorological Service warned on Thursday that powerful Cyclone Hidaya was approaching the eastern coast of Africa and would hit Kenya and Tanzania in the coming days. From Friday to Sunday, the wind will blow at a speed of over 75 kilometers per hour, accompanied by high waves of several meters and heavy rainfall.

Main photo source: DANIEL IRUNGU/PAP/EPA



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