Grief has hit Githurai village of Ruiru constituency in Kiambu County after a family of five succumbed to inhalation of suspected carbon monoxide emitted by burning charcoal from a jiko that was warming their house.
The young family residing in a poorly ventilated single-roomed house was found having been warmed to a painless death on Friday late night.
Police say that the family went unseen for the better part of January 1, 2020 and that is when detectives rushed to their house only to confirm that a father, mother and their three children had died from what police suspect is carbon monoxide poisoning.
The youngest in the family is a one-month-old child while the rest, a boy and a girl are below the age of 10.
The father, a seller of boiled maize in the populous Githurai town is reported to have been seen preparing his sellable food items outside the house but when it started raining, he took the charcoal Jiko that was boiling them inside only to vanish.
Ruiru Sub County police commander Phineas Lingera said that police found a Jiko whose contents were dry.
His sentiments were echoed by neighbors to the house who reported having seen the middle-aged man boiling maize outside but went inside when it started raining.
As the country continues to register a heavy downpour, Lingera warned members of the public to keep away Jikos in poorly ventilated houses to avert such saddening occurrences.
The bodies were taken to City Mortuary for preservation even as further investigations to ascertain the cause of death continue.
According to the World Health Organisation (WHO), concentration of carbon monoxide is high near street intersections, in congested traffic, near exhaust gases from internal combustion engines, poorly ventilated areas and industrial sources.
In Kenya, the unseen silent killer leaves people with an innate desire to keep warm behind closed doors during the cold weather dead due to toxic effects to the circulation system after it is inhaled.
The incident happened hours after five children from Mwihoko in the same constituency died after an abandoned shrub where they were playing caved in resulting in their death.
The children, all aged between three and seven years were playing within the compound of an abandoned construction site when the tragedy occurred.
Two of them succumbed to breathing complications when they were being rushed to different private hospitals within the scene of the incident.
According to Lingera, the five children drowned in the water under the shrub.
Lingera said that all the five bodies have been retrieved and taken to different preservation facilities.
He regretted the incidents saying that his jurisdiction was optimistic not to record any occurrence during the year 2021 crossover and beyond but the startling happened.