ONE person died while three others escaped with injuries after an abandoned mine shaft caved in on them as they were looking for gold, police have confirmed.
The now deceased —Vusumuzi Chidziwa (18) — was in the company of a group of 11 other illegal gold miners who invaded an old mine shaft on Larry Avenue, Kensington in Bulawayo.
Police spokesperson for Bulawayo Inspector Abednico Ncube confirmed the incident and told Sunday News that they were still investigating the case.
He said circumstances were that an illegal gold mining syndicate, comprising 12 artisanal miners, invaded a mine shaft on Larry Avenue, Kensington in Bulawayo last week.
On the same day at around 11pm, four of the men including the now deceased got in the shaft and started mining while the other eight remained outside sleeping under a tree.
“Around 4am, the mine shaft collapsed and the four were trapped inside. The eight were awoken by the noise of the caving mine shaft and immediately attended to it.
They managed to rescue three other group members by digging using shovels. They also rendered first aid to the three but it was too late for Chidziwa who died in the mine shaft,” said Insp Ncube.
A report was made to the police who attended the scene and the body was taken to United Bulawayo Hospital for post-mortem.
“We would like to warn members of the public to desist from practicing illegal mining activities.
“Some mine shafts are located in loam soils which are less structurally stable than other types of soil and pose a significant safety risk putting the miners in danger of serious injuries or death,” said Insp Ncube. Sunday News