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Two die in Taita chopper crash

Two people died on Monday after a plane they were traveling in crashed in Mwalashi village, Vuria Hill, in Taita Taveta County, authorities have confirmed.

According to initial reports, the light aircraft C172 Caravan Reg No. 5Y CFE that was being operated by Flying Training Centre (FTC) took off from Wilson Airport in Nairobi on Monday at 1830hrs en route to Mombasa and is said to have crashed at around 1930hrs.

The iconic Vuria hill is the highest point in the Coast region, sitting at 2,228 metres above sea level.

Confirming the incident, County Police Commander Patrick Okeri said that the accident occurred at a rocky section of the towering cliff near some traditional caves.

The area Chief accompanied by police officers and emergency responders from Kenya Red Cross made their way to the scene of the wreckage and sealed it off.

“We found two bodies, but the search is going on to find out if there could have been others that might have been thrown out by the impact,” Okeri said.

Two staff badges belonging to a Dr. Athman Lugogo of the Makueni County Referral Hospital and Esther Kamande of the Kenya Airports Authority were at the scene of the accident.

The incident comes just a day after a chopper that had flown ODM leader Raila Odinga crashed as it tried to lift off at Kudho Primary School in Gem, Siaya County.

A statement by Raila’s spokesperson Dennis Onyango said the plane Bell 407 registration 5Y-PSM had taken off to create space for other aircraft before it crash-landed.

The ODM leader had already alighted and only his four aides and the pilot were on board.