DEADLY

Erect Outering barriers to block pedestrians crossing — MP

13km stretch between Taj Mall and Allsops especially dangerous, people avoid footbridges.

In Summary

• Thirteen footbridges set up along deadly 13km stretch but pedestrians avoid them as hawkers crowd around them. Few people use them.

• MP George Theuri asked Transport CS to put up barriers, problem referred to National Assembly's departmental committee for transport.

Pedestrians crossing Outering Road at Fedha area on June 28, 2018.
DANGER: Pedestrians crossing Outering Road at Fedha area on June 28, 2018.
Image: EZEKIEL AMING'A

The national government has been urged to erect barriers on Outering Road to prevent pedestrians from crossing and being struck by vehicles.

The 13km stretch between Taj Mall and Allsops is the site of many accidents and there has been an uproar over pedestrian fatalities and injuries.

Pedestrians avoid the 11 footbridges along the stretch and cross the busy highway directly for convenience.

Embakasi West MP George Theuri said accidents and deaths happen almost daily between Taj Mall and Allsops and they are increasing.

At least four pedestrian fatalities are reported every month as people avoid footbridges, he said.

Weekly pedestrian accidents are always reported to my office and residents mostly blame pedestrians who refuse to use footbridges," Theuri said.

The footbridges are strategically placed, especially between two estates, one on either side.

The dualling of Outering Road cost Sh8.5 billion and was opened in January 2015. It was funded by the government and the African Development Bank

Between the two sides of the dual carriage is a ditch intended to discourage crossing. It hasn't worked.

People still risk crossing the busy road, some on foot, some carrying children and some on motorbikes

Theuri is calling on Transport CS James Macharia to set up barricades, probably at the median along the stretch, forcing people too use footbridges.

The second-term MP also asks what measures have been put in place for comprehensive road safety campaigns, particularly in urban areas.

Pedestrians have been avoiding footbridges, saying they are inconvenient as hawkers cluster at the base of the staircases, making access difficult.

Theuri said crowding is no excuse for crossing the road and risking one's life. He said it's better to manouevre through hawkers and use the footbridges.

National Assembly Speaker Justin Muturi directed the barrier request be sent to the Departmental Committee on Transport for a reply.

Outering Road has been making headlines in the past two years, leading in the number of accidents from 2018 to 2019. 

In June 2018, NTSA ranked Outering Road the city's most dangerous highway.

In August 2019, Outering Road was ranked the second deadliest after Mombasa Road.

(Edited by V. Graham)