Five people lost their lives with five others seriously injured after a rock fell on them while prospecting gold in Ikolomani sub county, Kakamega county on Thursday evening.
Five others escaped unhurt during the incident that occurred at 7:00 pm at Bushiangala village.
The bodies were retrieved and taken to the Kakamega County General Hospital mortuary.
The injured were admitted at the Shibwe Level Four hospital.
Kakamega South police boss, Joseph Cheshire, said that the five died when a rick fell on the from the roof of the tunnel.
“The five who were injured said that they got lost inside the tunnel and took a wrong channel where the rick fell unexpectedly,” Cheshire said.
Cheshire added that the miners do not heed to warnings from the government and asked local leaders to educate their voters on the dangers posed by the crude mining methods.
Kakamega governor Wycliffe Oparanya has sent a message of condolence to the bereaved families.
He says he is deeply saddened by the tragic death of the miners saying it was a sad incident and a big lose to their families and the county at large.
“It is sad that the miners met the cruel death while in search of their daily bread,” the governor said.
Oparanya has wished the injured victims quick recovery.
Following the tragedy, Oparanya has banned mining activities in the county during this rainy season to save more lives.
He said the soils were wet occasioned by the heavy rains thereby exposing the miners to dangers while on gold prospecting business.He urged police and county security personnel to work closely and ensure the directive is enforced.
Artisanal mining is common in Ikolomani and many parts where gold prospecting is common