Fishermen injured by hippos in Lake Naivasha attack


Hippo on Lake
File image of a hippo. PHOTO| COURTESY

Doctors at Naivasha sub-county hospital have been forced to amputate the legs of a fisherman who was over the weekend attacked by a hippo in Lake Naivasha.

The medics noted that the only option in saving the life of the middle aged father of two lay in cutting both the legs under the knees.

This came as environmentalists and the medics expressed their concern over increasing cases of wildlife attacks around the lakeside town.

The town is home to two major national parks and many game sanctuaries with majority of the wildlife straying out in search of pasture and water.

The three men were attacked by a crash of hippos in Kasarani and Oserian areas leaving one of them dead and two others seriously injured.

According to the nurse in charge of the male surgical ward Susan Kamau, two men suffering from deep wounds were wheeled into the facility in serious condition.

The nurse noted that in the first case, both legs of the victim had been crushed, noting that it would have been impossible to treat them.

“The victim had to be rushed to theatre as his legs were literally hanging from the skin and they had to be amputated as we did not have any other option,” she said.

She was optimistic that the victim would recover and later on in life be fitted with artificial legs which could aid him in walking.

“The second victim had a deep bruise on the thigh caused by a hippo. But he’s in stable condition and will be released soon,” she said.

According to the amputation victim Enock Romano, he was laying his fishing nets near Kasarani landing beach when the hippos attacked him from behind.

Tears flowed as Romano said that he was yet to come to terms with the attack which had left him crippled for the rest of his life.

His wife Mary Getlie asked for assistance from the Kenya Wildlife Service (KWS) and other well-wishers saying that her husband was the sole bread winner of the family and was not sure how they were going survive as the attack had left him bed ridden and reliant on other people.

The second victim John Gichinga who was left with thigh injuries said that the incident occurred very fast adding that he managed to miraculously swim away from the jaws of the wild animals.

“The hippo had grabbed me at the thigh but through the grace of God I managed to escape from its jaws, although with some deep wounds,” he said.

 

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Story By Karanja Kimani
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