Floods in Kenya: tourists evacuated from the Maasai Mara reserve Floods in Kenya: tourists evacuated from the Maasai Mara reserve

Floods in Kenya: tourists evacuated from the Maasai Mara reserve

Floods in Kenya: tourists evacuated from the Maasai Mara reserve

Tourists were flown out of Kenya's Maasai Mara National Reserve on Wednesday after more than a dozen hotels, lodges and camps were flooded following heavy rains that continue to batter the country.

Tourist facilities were submerged after a river in the Maasai Mara National Reserve burst its banks early Wednesday. The reserve, located in southwestern Kenya , is a popular tourist destination as it hosts the annual wildebeest migration from the Serengeti , Tanzania .

The Kenya Red Cross said it rescued 36 people by air and 25 others by land. The Narok County government said it had deployed two helicopters to carry out evacuations in the vast conservation area.

More than 170 people have died in Kenya since mid-March, when the rainy season began, causing floods, landslides and the destruction of infrastructure. The metrology department has warned that further rain is expected this week.

A river overflowed from a blocked tunnel in the Mai Mahiu region of western Kenya on Monday, sweeping away homes and damaging roads. The incident left 48 dead and more than 80 missing.

Search and rescue operations are underway in the Mai Mahiu area. President William Ruto on Tuesday ordered the military to assist in the search.

Residents in the area say rescue operations have been slow due to a lack of equipment to dig through the debris.

The government has asked people living in flood-prone areas to evacuate or be forcibly relocated as water levels in two major hydroelectric dams hit a "historic record" .

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