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Kenya grapples with floods and heavy rains


In Kenya, the onset of the long rains season (March to May) has brought severe storms, resulting in heavy rainfall and flash floods across multiple regions. Initial reports indicate significant impact, with at least 13 casualties, nearly 3,000 households displaced, over 339 livestock lost, and extensive crop damage due to flooding. Particularly affected areas include Marsabit, Turkana, Tana River, Garissa, Kirinyaga, Muranga, Kiambu, Meru, Kisumu, Nairobi, and Kitui counties.

Efforts to address the situation are underway, with humanitarian organizations distributing emergency shelter and non-food items to affected regions. Collaborative assessments with authorities are ongoing to determine and respond to community needs. As of April 9, more than 13 fatalities have been recorded, with close to 20,000 individuals (almost 4,000 households) affected, including approximately 15,000 people (3,000 households) displaced. The long rains season has led to elevated water levels in rivers, significant infrastructural damage, loss of livestock and property, and restricted access to roads across the country.

Notable concerns include the isolation of communities in Garissa County, where sub-counties such as Hulugho, Ijara, Masalani, Bothai, Liboi, and Fafi are inaccessible due to flooding. In Kirinyaga County, floods resulting from the burst of Thiba River banks have displaced around 7,500 individuals (1,500 households) and caused substantial damage to homes, properties, and crops in the Mwea irrigation scheme. Muranga County witnessed a landslide incident in Githunguri village, leading to one casualty and property damage, while fatalities were reported in Kitui County due to drowning. Marsabit County has recorded significant livestock losses, with preliminary reports indicating damage to homes, roads, and bridges. Nairobi County has suffered casualties and displacement, especially in informal settlements like Mukuru kwa Njenga and Mukuru kwa Reuben east. Authorities have issued warnings regarding the Seven Forks Dams nearing capacity, urging communities in low-lying areas to evacuate to safer grounds. The Kenya Meteorological Department has forecasted continued heavy rainfall and isolated storms across the country from April 9 to 15, posing a heightened risk of flash floods in various regions.

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