West Kenya Sugar to pay Sh11.9m over cyclist’s death

A tractor ferrying sugarcane from sugarcane plantations. 

Photo credit: File photo | Nation Media Group

West Kenya Sugar Company has been ordered to pay the family of a motorcyclist who was killed in an accident three years ago Sh11.9 million after holding that the firm's tractor driver caused the accident.

Justice Reuben Nyakundi upheld the decision of an Eldoret magistrate saying it was more likely that because of the extended load on the tractor, the driver did not pay attention to other road users when he collided with Edward Maserabu's motorcycle on August 14, 2020.

The firm's tractor was ferrying sugarcane along Turbo-Webuye road when it collided with Maserabu's motorcycle, killing him on the spot.

"Accordingly, the trial court did not err in apportioning liability at 70:30 percent against the Appellant," the judge said.

The sugar miller had appealed against the judgment, saying the trial magistrate erred in apportioning 70 percent liability to 30 percent contrary to the evidence on record.

The High Court judge, however, slashed about Sh2 million from the initial award by the trial magistrate.

The firm wanted the court to apportion 50 percent blame on each party, for contributing to the accident.

According to the sugar company, the magistrate failed to consider its evidence. Further, it was the firm's case that a police officer who produced the police abstract in court indicated that investigations into the cause of the accident were yet to be concluded.

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