Law enforcement officials have apprehended a security guard connected to the Embakasi gas explosion, which has resulted in the loss of three lives and left over 220 individuals injured. The arrest was carried out by DCI detectives shortly after being granted a 48-hour window to probe the incident.
Police have indicated that the watchman was responsible for guarding the premises where the gas-laden truck, which subsequently exploded, was stationed. However, the DCI has yet to disclose the charges against the watchman, whose identity remains undisclosed.
According to reports, two mechanics have also been implicated in the incident, with residents alleging that they ignited the fire that triggered the explosion. Concerned residents claim to have detected the smell of leaking gas around 10 pm while the mechanics were attending to a broken-down vehicle nearby. Fearing the consequences, they purportedly cautioned the mechanics against jump-starting the vehicle, as sparks could potentially ignite a fire. The whereabouts of the mechanics remain unknown, pending investigation by DCI detectives.
The blaze was reported on Thursday night following a gas explosion near a residential area in Embakasi. Some residents have criticized the National Environment Management Authority (NEMA), alleging that their concerns regarding air pollution from the gas facility in the area were disregarded.
What Residents say about Embakasi Gas Explosion
A resident, identified as a real estate specialist, lamented, “You can imagine the last two months I lived in that house, I didn’t step onto my balcony or even open the windows of my house. I couldn’t handle the smell of the gas anymore.”
Hundreds of victims were promptly transported to Mama Lucy Hospital and Kenyatta National Hospital (KNH) for medical attention. Government Spokesperson Isaac Mwaura has urged the public to avoid the area to facilitate rescue operations and investigations.
Responding to the tragedy, Nairobi Women Representative Esther Passaris has pledged assistance to the affected individuals and urged well-wishers to donate blood at various hospitals. Governor Johnson Sakaja has also announced that Nairobi County will waive all medical fees for the victims of the Embakasi fire, as relief efforts to aid those affected are underway.