Uganda: Three Feared Dead as Lorry Plunges Into River Nile

By Julius Ocungi

Three people including a driver, turn man and a passenger are feared dead after the vehicle they were travelling in plunged into the Nile river at Karuma Bridge in Kirynadongo District.

The vehicle, a Fuso box body truck white in colour laden with unspecified goods was reportedly heading to Kampala on Friday when the driver lost control and plunged into the river at about 7pm.

Eye witness account

Mr Emmanuel Esaku, an employee working at Sinohydro Corporation Ltd in Karuma trading centre told Daily Monitor that the vehicle hit the left rail guard of the bridge before plunging into the water.

He said he witnessed the accident while trying to cross Karuma Bridge from Karuma trading center.

“I was on a boda boda motorcycle from Karuma trading centre. We saw the truck approaching the bridge heading to Kampala and stopped. But instead of the truck adjusting to maintain its course on the left hand side, it went straight and hit the rail guards on the bridge and plunged into the water.”

“All we heard was a loud bang in the water, I don’t know the fate of the occupants,” Mr Esaku said.

He noted that as the vehicle was approaching, they had to stop before entering the bridge since the vehicle was “big”.

“We stopped before approaching the bridge, the vehicle was big, it had already entered the bridge and we couldn’t dare join but unfortunately, it went into the water,” Mr Esaku said.

Albertine Region Public Relations officer Allan Hakiza confirmed the incident to Daily Monitor.

“It’s true a Lorry Fuso box body plunged into river Nile at about 7pm.

We understand that three people were on board but we are trying to establish their fate, ” Mr Hamish said.

He noted that police marine and the fire brigade have been deployed at the scene to retrieve the vehicle and recover bodies of the occupants in the vehicle who are presumed dead.

Mr Hakiza said police suspect the accident could have been caused as a result of over speeding.

“We are still investigating what could have caused the accident.

But the preliminary information we have indicates that the driver was over speeding,” Mr Hakiza said.

Past incidences at Karuma bridge

Friday’s incidence is the second time this year that a truck plunged into River Nile at Karuma bridge.

In February this year a lorry laden with cotton seeds from neighbouring Democratic Republic of Congo plunged into Karuma Falls in Kiryandongo district.

The driver of the truck survived the nasty accident with minor injuries.

In 2000, a gateway bus plunged into the River Nile waters at the Karuma Bridge, killing at least 11 people.

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