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Police Chase Results To A Bad Accident, Several People Hospitalised.

Several people are nursing serious injuries at various hospitals in Murang'a County after the Nissan matatus they were travelling in collided head on at the Kaggia Road and Kenol-Murang'a junction near Golden Palm Hotel in Kenol Town.

According to one of the victims, they had boarded one of the vehicles at Juja Town heading to Murang’a Town. Upon arriving at the Makenji police roadblock, they were signaled to stop but the driver just sped off.
The police decided to pursue the van as their driver accelerated towards Kabati Trading Centre where he branched off towards Kagundui-ni. He then branched to Kaggia Road with intent of linking Kenol-Murang'a Road just past Kenol Town, a distance of about than 20km.

“My sister, my son and I were in this black vehicle heading to Murang’a. Some policemen stopped it but the driver refused to stop and sped off. They (police) chased us even when we drove towards Kabati. When we arrived at this junction, it seems that the brakes failed because the matatu just failed to stop, forcing us to hit that Nissan and eventually roll over,” said Njoki who was travelling with her son and sister.

She said that when they were just about to reach the junction of the two roads, the brakes of their vehicle failed, forcing it to ram onto an oncoming Nissan matatu that was ferrying mourners to a funeral. The impact of their collision forced the first vehicle to overturn and roll over to its side.

When the chase police saw this, it is alleged that they sped off towards Kenol and then to Makuyu Police Station, where they are suspected to be from.

The drivers of both vehicles as well as those who were sitting on the front seats were seriously injured, with one of them said to have lost his limbs. Others sustained minor injuries and bruises. Majority of those who sustained injuries were in the second matatu that was coming from Murang’a.

Immediately after the accident, good Samaritans rushed to the scene and started rescuing the victims. They were rushed to nearby hospitals in Kenol Town.

The action of the police invoked angry reactions from the wananchi and bodaboda riders who barricaded and lit bonfires along the Kenol-Murang'a Road, paralysing transport services for more than three hours. Police had to fire in the air to disperse the irate mob who accused them of causing the accident due to their greed for money.

“Hawa askari wamezoea mbaya sana kuchukua hongo na kuharas madereva na bodaa bila sababu. Why couldn’t they just take the number plate of the matatu and instruct their colleagues in Murang’a or Kenol to arrest the driver instead of risking the lives of all these people? What if they could have all perished here? What would they have said? They killed them because of a 50 bob bribe?” asked one angry bodaboda rider.

They alleged that the police have made it a habit of terrorising motorists for nothing and demanding hefty bribes in exchange of their freedom.

Kenol Deputy County Commissioner John Njora confirmed the incident and said that they were investigating the incident to ascertain the police officers who were involved in this whole saga.

“Yes, there was a matatu that had been pursued by traffic officers even though I do not have the full details of where it was coming from but it just emerged from Karigui-ni area. Two vehicles have been involved with at least 5 people being seriously injured. I have come here because wananchi have become unruly but we have settled that matter with them,” said the DCC.

In the past, there have been cases of bystanders and passengers being killed in police car chases with many others injured as officers repeatedly pursued drivers at high speeds and in hazardous conditions. The police usually chase these vehicles for traffic violations or misdemeanors, often causing drivers to speed away recklessly.

The question in most people’s lips is, should the police chase a vehicle that is full of passengers?  In case of automobile collisions, who is at fault for this collision, is it the driver of vehicle being chased or the police? If the chase endangers the public, should the police need to back off.? If a chase results in a crash that leads to injuries or death, who should bear this liability, is it the driver or the police?

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