Shipping & Logistics

Union faults KPA over fatal port accident

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Kenya Ports Authority (KPA) Yard in Mombasa. FILE PHOTO | NMG

Summary

  • The Dock Workers Union (DWU) has raised concerns over safety of workers at the Kenya Ports Authority.
  • The union’s secretary general Simon Sang accused the port management of negligence, saying this was the reason for a recent fatal accident at the facility.
  • Two workers died on Friday evening while six others were injured after a silo bin fell on them at the Portside Freight Container Station at shade number 7/8.

The Dock Workers Union (DWU) has raised concerns over safety of workers at the Kenya Ports Authority.

The union’s secretary general Simon Sang accused the port management of negligence, saying this was the reason for a recent fatal accident at the facility.

Two workers died on Friday evening while six others were injured after a silo bin fell on them at the Portside Freight Container Station at shade number 7/8.

The silo bin is said to have collapsed on the workers where they were offloading fertiliser.

Mr Sanga said the shade where the accident occurred was designed for transit cargo and not for bagging machines.

“The shade is unable to sustain the kind of equipment that have been put at the moment. It was meant to temporarily store cargo that are being offloaded from the vessels awaiting immediate delivery,” said Mr Sang.

He expressed concerns that the shade might entirely collapse if corrective measures are not put into place, hence putting the lives of workers at risk.

Kenya Ports Authority acting managing director Rashid Salim termed the incident as unfortunate adding that investigation has been launched to establish the cause of the accident.

“We regret to confirm that an accident happened inside the port at shed number 7/8 when engineers from a private firm were commissioning bins for handling fertiliser. It is unfortunate that two people have been confirmed dead and six others injured,” said Mr Salim in a statement.

He said the management have teamed up with authorities to find out cause of the accident.

for the necessary action to be taken.

Coast regional commissioner John Elungata confirmed that relevant authorities have taken up the matter.

This is not the first time port workers are dying of accidents at the facility.

Last year, an employee from Likoni Sub county in Mombasa died after he was buried alive by clinker in one of the berths.