Grief engulfed Mabomani village in Voi town after a woman was gored to death by a rogue elephant on the loose onMonday afternoon.
Police said the victim was walking to a nearby shop when she encountered the rogue elephant that had strayed from the Tsavo East National Park.
The jumbo, a mother reported to have been shielding its calf, gored her on the stomach leaving her with life-threatening injuries.
There are reports that villagers had provoked the elephant by making noise and throwing stones to chase it away.
During the encounter, a Kenya Wildlife Service (KWS) honorary community warden was also seriously wounded as he attempted to scare away the enraged elephant to save the woman’s life.
Speaking to KNA on Tuesday, County Police Commander Mr. Fred Ochieng said the woman was rushed to Moi County Referral Hospital where she succumbed to her injuries.
We unfortunately lost her as she was being treated at the facility, he confirmed.
Mr. Benjamin Kigo, the honorary warden, sustained serious thigh and upper abdomen injuries.
He was rushed to St. Joseph Ikanga hospital for treatment before he was transferred to Pandya Hospital in Mombasa for specialized treatment.
A joint team of police and KWS rangers was deployed at the scene and shot dead the elephant.
The fate of the calf remains unknown.
The chairman for the County Wildlife Compensation Committee John Mlamba termed the death as tragic noting it added to the rising statistics of people killed by elephants in the region.
In it 2017 report, the County Wildlife Compensation Committee (CWCC) stated the County had 23 elephant-related deaths since 2014. Over 70 per cent of these fatalities occurred from 2016.
The number of injuries and near-fatal encounters caused by rogue jumbos run in their hundreds.
We are asking that as we seek a permanent solution to the human wildlife conflict, let the deaths be compensated to alleviate the pain, he said noting that only three families have been compensated for the death of their loved ones since last year.
The residents were however cautioned against trying to engage the elephants when they stray into human settlements.
Mr. Ochieng said driving away elephants required skills, equipment and experience that the public lacked.
He said the public role should be to inform the police and KWS about the elephants’ presence.
The public should stay away and avoid confronting wildlife that can pose danger to human life, he said.
Tsavo Conservation Area occupies 22, 810 km2 and according to 2011 wildlife census, it is home for 12, 570 elephants.
Source: Kenya News Agency