According to a 2013 report by CNN, L.Victoria is the most dangerous freshwater lake in the world. The lake is located in the South-Western part of Kenya, the 83M deep lake borders Uganda, Tanzania, and Kenya. The lake claims 5000 lives annually.
Many factors contribute to the death toll in the 59,947KM² large lake. The latest tragedy in the lake is the Homabay boat tragedy where up to 7 people have been confirmed dead after their boat capsized 400M from the shore. They were attending a church function across the lake.
The following are some of the reasons that contribute to the dangers of the lake.
1. Unpredictable Weather Conditions
Lying at the equator, the region is very warm. Still and calm weather can easily change to hails and thunderstorms within a short time due to convective potential energy. Rainy weather hinders rowing back. The boat can break or at least capsize. A fisherman from the lake reveals that their boats can't sustain the waves from the rain.
2. Poor Communication.
Fishermen who go to the deep end of the lake in cases of emergency fail to reach out for help from the shore. They end up drowning. Live jackets are scarce for fishermen and boat riders. Knowing how to swim is not a savior either, in the deep end it's hard to tell the direction of the shore.
2. Rocky water bed
Lake Victoria contains large rocks some above the water and others just beneath the surface. Strong winds push boats towards the rocks. Places where the rocks are have been considered black spots and fishermen try to stay away. When pushed towards it, the rocks break the boat.
Lack of rescue boats, standby rescuers, scarce life jackets, and overloading are among other factors that contribute to the rising death toll in the freshwater lake.
Lake Victoria is the third-largest freshwater lake in the world after the Caspian sea in Iran, Lake Superior in the USA, and Canada.
Worst tragedies in the lake include; Mwanza port tragedy in 1996 where 500 people died after an overloaded ferry sunk, on 20th September 2018 more than 220 people died abode MV Nyerere after it overturned.
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