A 37-year-old Victoria Falls mechanic was burnt and later died after drums of petrol he was keeping at his workshop at Jeche complex for sale on the black market caught fire. The cause of the fire could not immediately be ascertained.
The deceased identified as Tapinda Whisper Muzvidzva operated a panel-beating shop which also dabbled as a warehousing for storing fuel which he then sold on the black market.
Reports indicate that the blaze started while he was draining petrol with his workmates. One of his colleagues escaped with minor injuries. The now-deceased was rushed to Victoria Falls Hospital and was later transferred to Mpilo Central Hospital where he died last Friday.
An eyewitness who spoke to the Herald said
The now deceased was keeping fuel in drums and jerry cans at Jeche Complex in the industrial area. He would buy the fuel from service stations and stock it at his premises to later sell on the black market where he used an electric pump to drain from drums into a car. On the fateful day, one of his assistants switched on the electric pump to drain fuel for a client and there was a spark which set the premises alight.
National police spokesperson Assistant Commissioner Paul Nyathi said he was yet to receive the report. He said
We have always reiterated that members of the public should not keep fuel at private homes either in containers or in any other form.
We also appeal to service stations not to sell fuel to people who intend to do business on the black market.