A hero driver who averted a disaster by driving a burning fuel tanker out of a petrol station at Rwika market in Mbeere, Embu County has been rewarded.
County Commissioner Galgallo Abdullahi congratulated Mr James Mugo, 50, and gave him Sh10,000 for his brevity.
The father of two risked his life by taking the lorry to the nearby forest when it caught fire at the station.
He was emptying fuel when suddenly he saw thick smoke coming from the tanker.
When he sensed danger,he hurriedly drove the tanker away from the fuel station as huge fire engulfed it.
On reaching a safe distance, Mr Mugo jumped out and took off for his life. Fear gripped the market as explosions rocked the area.
Panicky residents scampered to safety as the tanker went up in flames and hid in miraa farms until the tanker was completely burnt.
The tanker was carrying 8,000 litres of fuel when the fire broke out.
Presenting the cash prize to the driver, Mr Abdullahi noted that were it not for his quick action, many lives would have been lost and property worth millions of shillings destroyed.
"The driver acted boldly and I must reward him," said Mr Abdullahi.
He also thanked Rwika residents for staying away from the burning tanker to avoid being burnt.
At one point, Mr Mugo shed tears of joy as he received a reward from the administrator.
"I never expected this would happen to me. I'm excited," he said at the commissioner's office.
Narrating the incident, Mr Mugo said the market was densely populated and he did not want people to die.
"I had to think and act very fast to prevent deaths in this area which has a lot of people who include traders," he said.