Driver arrested for culpable homicide following fuel tanker explosion

Police in Gauteng arrested a fuel tanker driver for culpable homicide following the death of 15 people and injuries of several others in Boksburg on Saturday.

According to Brigadier Brenda Muridili, the police traced and arrested the driver of the tanker at a private hospital, where he had been receiving medical care for minor injuries, on Saturday evening.

“The 32-year-old suspect has been charged with multiple counts of culpable homicide, negligent causing of an explosion resulting in death [Act 26 of 1956, Section 27 (2)] and malicious damage to property,” said Muridili.

Preliminary investigations found that the loaded fuel tanker got stuck trying to drive through a low bridge in Boksburg, Ekurhuleni, and the impact resulted in an explosion.

The fuel tanker was allegedly driving from Richard’s Bay en route to Botswana.

Boksburg death toll rises to 15

The driver and several people who sustained injuries, including eight firefighters, were taken to various hospitals for medical treatment.

The death toll currently stands at 15.

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The full damage to infrastructure as well as private property is yet to be determined.

The driver will appear before the Boksburg Magistrates Court on 28 December 2022.

Fuel tanker driver ‘experienced’

Meanwhile, Innovative Staffing Solutions (ISS) confirmed a full investigation into the circumstances of the fuel tanker explosion in Boksburg is already underway, as one of its drivers had been driving the vehicle.

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In a statement, ISS said its internal investigation already established that the driver is “highly experienced, with a professional driving qualification in working at heights, and seven years of experience in transporting hazardous materials. “

The driver had also recently passed a medical test confirming his fitness to drive, said the company.

“We would like to offer our sincere condolences to the families of the deceased, as well as to those who were injured,” said ISS Managing Director Arnoux Maré states.

“Our hearts truly go out to all victims of the explosion, and we would like to offer our complete reassurance that we are performing an urgent internal and independent investigation to determine the true cause of the accident. The health and safety of our employees, clients and the public are our top priority, and we are taking this incident extremely seriously.”

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Compiled by Vhahangwele Nemakonde





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