The police pulled a surprise on Azimio protesters in Nairobi on Monday, March 20, after they unleashed several water cannon trucks in an attempt to keep the growing crowds at bay.
When teargas canisters failed and the protesters drew closer to the police, officers used water to scatter them and keep them at a safe distance.
Kenyans.co.ke did research on the vehicle internationally used during riots and established why it is often preferred by security agencies.
The first sight of the green trucks was on Thika Road, where a motorist recorded several of them being transported to the city centre on flatbed trailers.
Each truck costs between Ksh16 and 20 million. Manufacturer International Armored Group categorise them as armoured vehicles as they are equipped with ballistic, mine-blast and improvised explosive device (IED) protection.
It is fitted with two cannons which are connected to a water tank with a capacity of 14,000 litres. One of the canons shoots streams of water vertically and the other horizontally.
The tanks can fire water under high pressure as far as 60 metres. Some trucks have a heating system in the truck to allow officers to fire hot water at protesters.
At the front of the truck sits a hydraulic ram made from heavy-duty metal. Once deployed, it has the ability to clear objects such as large rocks and small cars out of its way.
In addition, it is fitted with a number of high-intensity LED lights which provides night vision for the driver. However, it is often used to temporarily blind the protestors.
The cabin of the truck can hold between 6 and eight occupants. Its windscreen is made of bullet-full grass hidden behind a steel mesh.
Outside, the body is reinforced with steel, which enables police officers to remain unfazed even as some of the protestors pelted stones at the trucks.
The vehicle is powered by a 12.8-litre engine that can generate up to 480 horsepower and is available in both automatic and manual transmission.
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