Burning log thrown into shaft causes explosion, kills two miners

Danisa Masuku

Nobody knows whether it was deliberate or it was a genuine mistake. The jury is still out.

An unidentified artisanal miner allegedly threw a burning log into a mine shaft while two miners, James Ndebele (38) of Maglas suburb and Alfred Hove (19) of Bricks village in Mberengwa in Midlands Province were inside the mine causing explosives to explode, killing them on the spot.

The incident occurred last Saturday at around 9 pm at Dohwe 118 mine and was confirmed by Midlands Police Spokesperson Inspector Emmanuel Mahoko.

“I confirm the incident and we urge miners to observe precaution to avoid such incidents,” he said.

In a press statement, police said: “While Ndebele and Hove were working in the mine Hove asked for a gas lighter to light his cigarette to smoke.  The artisanal miner who was working outside of the mine with his two colleagues reached for a burning log from the fireplace and threw it into the mine. It landed on the explosives causing them to explode, killing them on the spot.”

The artisanal miner and his two colleagues sustained injuries after debris caused by the explosion landed on them. The incident was reported to the police and investigations are in progress.

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