Police officers in Matete had a hectic time fighting fuel looters at Lwandeti market along the busy Eldoret – Webuye highway after a tanker transporting petrol veered off the road and
overturned spilling the commodity.
Confirmed reports indicated that the vehicle was hauling over 30,000 liters of super petrol when the driver lost control hitting a saloon car that was infront after the car slowed down to divert towards Lwandeti D.E.B primary school before the tanker veered off the road and overturned.
Hundreds of residents thronged the highway hungering to siphon the highly flammable commodity that has in the past caused tragic accidents.
Though police officers arrived on time at the scene they encountered difficulties in keeping at the bay the surging crowd that included the local boda boda operators who struggled to fill their containers as well as their motorbike tanks.
“Police officers rushed to the scene, but because of the larger number of people who had already gathered at the scene siphoning petrol and threatening to set the place on fire if stopped from looting the content, they encountered difficulties in stopping the looters,” said an eye witness who requested for anonymity.
The police remained to be spectators as the looter continued siphoning the fuel and went on to loot the commodity and emptied the tank.
However, over ten people went unconscious after inhaling the petrol and lacking fresh air as they scrambled to siphon it. They were given First Aid and later recovered.
According to Lwandeti location chief Thomas Luvonga the vehicle was transporting the fuel from Eldoret towards Webuye when the accident occurred adding that the tanker driver and his conductor who both escaped without injuries vanished from the scene immediately after the accident.
Luvonga condemned the resident’s behavior of looting from vehicles involved in accidents along the highway warning such activities will not be condoned.
“It’s highly risky to engage in petrol siphoning and most disappointing to see underage children being used in the vice,” he said adding that the commodity was highly flammable