Kenyan Flash Wildlife Service (KWS) officials have announced the death of at least six people at Kenya’s Hell’s Gate National Park.
They were killed by flash floods with officials still searching for one other person reported missing.
Six members of a tour group were swept away according to KWS officials alongside a tour guide.
Officials said “The victims are five Kenyans, local tourist guide and a non-resident (foreigner).”
The incident occurred on Sunday in the Rift Valley, some 69 km north west of the capital, Nairobi.
On it’s twitter account, KWS said “It is with deep sorrow that we announce a tragedy in Hell’s Gate National Park in which an unknown number of tourists are feared to have drowned in flash floods while others survived.”
It later said “Six bodies of the flash flood victims have been recovered, having one tourist missing. The search and rescue operation continues as we reach out to next of kin to share details of sad incident and plan together next course of action.”
Six bodies of the flash flood victims have been recovered, leaving one tourist missing. The search and rescue operation continues as we reach out to next of kin to share details of sad incident and plan together next course of action.
— KWS (@kwskenya) September 2, 2019
Local media reported that a survivor from the group of tourists alerted park rangers when the incident took place.
That was when a search team and helicopter were dispatched to the scene.
KWS in a statement said “The gorge in Hell’s Gate National Park has been closed to the public with immediate effect due to continuing rains.”
Hell’s Gate park was named after a narrow break in its cliffs. It was once the tributary of a prehistoric lake and its downhill gorges are prone to flooding.
Set up in 1984, it is the site of spectacular scenery which inspired the hit Disney animation film The Lion King.