• County has been relying on Kakamega and Kisumu engines.
• Also gets rapid response vehicle to prevent loss of property in case of fire.
Vihiga county has acquired a Sh82 million modern fire engine and a rapid response vehicle from Austria to help fight fires and protect lives and property.
The county has been relying on fire engines from neighbouring Kakamega and Kisumu.
Fire has recently destroyed property in Keveye and Ebusakami girls’ high schools and Mbale and Luanda markets .
Transport and infrastructure executive Henry Lumbasio yesterday said the engine will be launched by Governor Wilber Ottichilo soon.
“The fire engine cost Sh67 million while the rapid response van cost Sh15 million. This will now ensure no property is lost to fires. We lost a lot of property to fires because of the long response considering the distance from Kisumu and Kakamega,” Lumbasio said.
The CEC said some of the fire engines responded without water, worsening the situation.
He said the newly acquired engine has a capacity of 10,000 litres capable of putting out several fires at a go without refilling.
“Having the engine within the county will enable us to help our people save their property,” he said.
A toll-free number will be issued to residents to report any fire outbreak in the county once the engine is officially commissioned, he said.
"Currently we have only one person who knows how to operate this fire engine, but the county is in the process of recruiting other 12 personnel who will be trained to ensure effective service delivery.
Edited by R. Wamochie