By Sukulwenkosi Dube-Matutu
A MINE worker died after he fell into a shaft that he was working in at a mine in Colleen Bawn.
Matabeleland South provincial police spokesperson Chief Inspector Philisani Ndebele confirmed the incident which occurred on Sunday at around 5AM at Bothal 8 Mine.
He said Chrispen Gumbi (46) of Mberengwa slipped and fell into a shaft and died on the spot.
“I can confirm that we recorded a sudden death case where a mine worker fell into a shaft at Bothal 8 Mine on Sunday. Chrispen Gumbi was working at a mine shaft with his workmate Ashton Dube at around 5AM.
“Gumbi then advised his workmate to go out of the shaft and collect matches which they were going to use to ignite dynamites.
Dube went out to collect the matches and upon his return, he called Gumbi to receive it but he didn’t respond,” he said.
Chief Insp Ndebele said Dube then descended into the shaft to check on Gumbi but he failed to locate him at the tunnel where he had left him.
He said Dube later found Gumbi’s body in the main shaft suggesting that Gumbi had slipped from the tunnel.
Chief Insp Ndebele said the matter was reported to the police who attended the scene and Gumbi’s body was conveyed to Gwanda Provincial Hospital Mortuary. He said Gumbi sustained injuries.
Chief Insp Ndebele urged mine owners to ensure that their workers have appropriate tools and safety clothing to avoid loss of life.
“As police we continue to urge miners to ensure that they have proper tools, safety clothing and machinery when conducting their operations.
Mine owners should also inspect their mines to ensure that they don’t endanger the lives of their workers.
People should also desist from engaging in illegal mining operations,” he said. The Chronicle