Generator Smoke Chokes 3 Artisanal Miners to Death
4 October 2021

Three artisanal miners died recently after breathing carbon monoxide generated by a
petrol engine they took underground to run a water pump in Shurugwi.

The incident occurred last Thursday, barely a week after three other miners died at Bonsa
mine, again in Shurugwi, after a ladder they were using collapsed.

Police in Shurugwi said the three who died in the disaster were pumping water
underground at J and C Mine and died in succession.

As the first passed out the second went down and when he was hit the third went down.
Area legislator, Cde Rabson Nyathi, who also confirmed the tragedy said the three had
taken a petrol engine pump into a 20-metre-deep shaft.

“They started the engine while underground and then went out leaving it running. One of
them then later got underground to check the levels of water, but due to carbon monoxide
he died.

“The second one went down to check why the first partner did not return and he was also
chocked and died, the same happened to the third guy, and they all died tragically in
succession while trying to check on each other,” he said.

Police identified the deceased as Moses Mzila (18), Gilbert Makusha (24) and Vusa
Mabutho (24), all of Dombojena in Shurugwi.

Carbon monoxide is generated within petrol engines and kills in fairly low concentrations
by replacing the oxygen in the bloodstream.

-State Media