20 April 2017

Rwanda: Three Injured As Fire Guts Local Beer Factory in Musanze

Photo: Regis Umurengezi/The New Times
People trying to help police put out the fire in Musanze district.

Three people were injured and properties worth millions destroyed after fire gutted a Musanze-based local beer factory, yesterday.

The incident occurred at around midday in Cyuve sector, Musanze District, according to officials.

Chief Inspector of Police Innocent Gasasira, the Northern Province regional police spokesperson confirmed the incident, saying investigations had started to ascertain the cause of the fire as well as the actual value of destroyed properties.

One employee sustained serious injuries while others sustained minor injuries.

They were rushed to Ruhengeri Hospital for treatment, according to Gasasira.

The factory makes beer from ginger, commonly known as Tangawizi.

"Our firefighting truck was at the scene to put out the fire before it spread to cause huge losses but we are still investigating the real cause of the fire outbreak," said Gasasira.

According to the factory owners and eye witnesses, it is suspected that the fire was caused by electrical short circuit.

Jean Pierre Niyigaba, the proprietor of the factory, said, "We saw smoke from the meter and went to check only to realise fire spreading inside the building. The most affected area is fermentation room."

He said the factory was insured against fire. The property destroyed was worth between Rwf40million and Rwf50million, according to Niyigaba.

"We were shocked on seeing heavy and huge flames up in the sky. We realised the factory was burning but we looked on helplessly," said an eye witness.

Police warned business operators to ensure their properties have insurance so that they don't lose whenever fire outbreaks occur but more importantly to prevent fire incidents.

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