Thika crash claims 12 soldiers

September 11, 2008 12:00 am

, NAIROBI, September 11 – At least twelve military officers were killed and eight others seriously wounded in a road accident in Thika on Thursday.

The officers were travelling from Isiolo to the Thika Army Barracks for their internal Sports Tournament, when the accident occurred at Mukeu estate, about eight kilometres from Thika town.

“Five of them were killed on the spot while six others were pronounced dead on arrival at the Thika District Hospital,” a senior police officer said.

Nine others, who sustained serious injuries, were given first aid at the Thika district hospital before being airlifted to the Forces Memorial Hospital on a military helicopter.

A military officer who requested to remain anonymous said that one of those taken to the Forces Memorial hospital passed away while undergoing treatment.

Witnesses told Capital News that the bus driver lost control over the vehicle and rammed into a wall on the side of the road. They speculated that the truck swerved to avoid hitting a Nissan matatu and skidded on the road which had been made slippery by light showers.

Military Spokesman Bogita Ongeri could not give more details on the accident, which he described as ‘unfortunate.’

“It is so sad that we have lost our officers, it was a very bad accident. There is nothing more we can say at this time,” he said.

A military officer who helped rescue his colleagues said the truck was carrying more than 20 officers when the accident occurred.

The rescue operation was conducted by police and military officers from the Thika barracks.

“We were at the barracks when we were telephoned and ordered to rush here. We found our colleagues writhing in pain. Others were dead. We quickly conducted a rescue operation and rushed the survivors to the Thika District Hospital,” a military officer at the scene said.


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