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Two presumed dead as fuel truck plunges into Karuma falls

Traffic on Karuma bridge along Kampala-Gulu highway is controlled for safety following an accident

Kampala, Uganda | THE INDEPENDENT | Two people are feared dead after a speeding fuel truck en-route to Kampala on Saturday lost control at Karuma bridge and plunged into the fast moving falls.

The tanker, registration number UAS 337M, according to police was coming from the Gulu, and hastily bypassed barricades mounted by police at the Karuma-Arua city highway junction. It then sped off and veered off the bridge after its hydraulic break system failed.

Patrick Jimmy Okema, the Aswa river region police spokesperson confirmed the accident, saying it occurred at around midday. The truck belonged to one Busulwa Charles, a businessman in Kampala.

Okema told URN in an interview that the highway integrated patrol teams from Nwoya and Oyam districts were at the scene to trace the missing bodies and control the traffic flow.

“Search results have not yet yielded,” Okema said.

He further pointed out that higher authorities and marine experts from police headquarters have been notified and are being awaited at the Karuma bridge to intensify the search efforts.

Police has appealed to motorists to ensure all motor vehicles plying the country’s highways to be in sound mechanical condition and observe road traffic safety rules to save lives especially when approaching bridges.

Joshua Odong, a regular transporter along the Gulu-Kampala highway observed that Karuma, which was built in the 1960’s during the colonial era is notorious for killing travelers because it does not have the requisite safety standards.

Dozens of people have untraceably lost their lives at the bridge. The most recent of the several accidents also involved two occupants of a Fuso truck registration number UAS 994Y which plunged into the falls and their bodies were never retrieved.

The bridge that borders Kiryandongo, Oyam and Nwoya districts has notably killed more than 10 people since 2017 without their bodies and their trucks being traced.

Karuma, located approximately 260 kilometres by road North of Kampala is considered one of the most dangerous bridges in the country. It connects Kampala to the regional cities of Gulu in Acholi, Arua in West Nile and Lira in Lango.



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