The three officers were part of a three-vehicle patrol team in the Somali border region.

Suddenly their truck hit the improvised explosive device (IED) and there was an explosion.

North Eastern regional commissioner Mohamud Saleh said, “The police car ran over an IED and we have casualties. All the dead officers are from one work station,” Saleh told Reuters, without revealing the number of wounded officers.

“From past incidences, it is easy to see that even this one is the work of our enemy, the al Shabaab. They plant these IEDs to target our security people.”

The Kenyan Red Cross said on Twitter eight officers had been wounded.

The Garissa county, in which the incident happened, has suffered several attacks linked to al Shabaab in the last few years.

This includes a 2015 assault on a university in which 148 people were killed.

Al Shabaab, which seeks to topple Somalia’s government and impose its own harsh interpretation of Sharia law, says it will continue to attack Kenya until Nairobi withdraws its troops from an African Union peacekeeping mission in Somalia.