Employee in trouble for negligent driving

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An employee with Deltek Enterprises Company in Bulawayo, who allegedly drove a car negligently causing the death of his two workmates, was on Thursday brought to court to answer to charges of culpable homicide.

Lonesome Gwangwari, whose age and residence were not given, pleaded not guilty when he appeared before Lupane resident magistrate Takudzwa Gwazemba on Friday. The magistrate remanded him out of custody to October 11 for the continuation of trial.

Allegations are that on October 3 last year, Gwangwari was driving a Mazda 323 along Bulawayo-Victoria Falls road with his workmates Tafadzwa Raya and Tichaona Manyonganise.

It is alleged he was driving negligently and when he reached the 91km peg in Lupane, he lost control of the vehicle and smashed into a tree by the roadside leading to the death of Raya and Manyonganise on the spot.

The accident was reported to the police, leading to the arrest of Gwangwari.

The State engaged Vehicle Inspection Department (VID) officers to investigate the cause of the accident.
Investigations established the vehicle was in good condition before the accident happened.

Inspectors confirmed the steering was flexible and the tyres had no signs of a burst, but the puncture might have been caused by the impact of hitting the tree.

This then allegedly implied the accident was a result of human error and not a technical problem. In his defence, Gwangwari said the accident was caused by the front tyre burst forcing him to lose control of the vehicle before hitting a tree.

VID inspectors in their report said the tyres appeared not to have burst, but were just deflated.
Sanders Sibanda prosecuted.