•KPA management has put in place strategic measures to mitigate against challenges of bad weather
•Meteorological Department says heavy rainfall at the Coast will continue unabated this week
Heavy rain at the Coast has disrupted operations at the port of Mombasa, Kenya Ports Authority said on Thursday.
KPA managing director Daniel Manduku said work had stalled for two days at the biggest port in East and Central Africa due to the rain pounding the region.
Ship operations at the conventional cargo area have been paralysed, Manduku said.
"Ships at the convectional cargo area have been forced to close hatches. The most affected vessels are those carrying wheat, fertilizer, steal and coal," he said.
In a phone interview, Manduku said at the container terminal only deliveries were ongoing.
"The whole of today (Thursday) there was nil performance in the operations areas as the rain persisted throughout the day. However, this is not something to worry about because operations will pick up once the rain comes to an end," he said.
Cargo evacuation from the port through the standard gauge railway freight services was also severely affected.
"The effects of this situation (heavy rain) have led to slow cargo evacuation, poor stevedoring services and reduced SGR operations," Manduku said.
The director said KPA management has put in place strategic measures to mitigate against the challenges of bad weather.
"We wish to assure our esteemed customers that the authority is making every effort to ensure that all resources are utilized optimally," he said.
The KPA boss urged clients who have not finished their clearance documentation to continue doing so and be ready to clear their cargo once the weather permits.
According to the alerts issued by the Kenya Meteorological Department, the heavy rainfall at the Coast will continue unabated this week.
The ongoing heavy rain in Mombasa has so far killed one person.
Ambroce Katana is said to have drowned in a flooded area of Kwa Bulo in Nyali constituency.
Nyali OCPD Simon Thirikwa confirmed the incident.