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DenelNews24 reports that day one of the public inquiry into the 2018 blast at the Rheinmetall Denel munitions plant, which killed eight people, started on Monday.

But more questions than answers surfaced surrounding the cause of the incident at the plant in Somerset West in the Western Cape. Three witnesses were called to testify before the inquiry, spearheaded by the Department of Labour, following mounting pressure from the victims' families. Among the witnesses was former operator Fernando Jacobs who had worked at the plant for six years. On the day of the explosion, Jacobs said he had worked in the N16 building where the explosion took place. The building was used to blend large volumes of propellant from smaller sub-lots. Jacobs said he had been on his way to the facility when the explosion occurred. He told the inquiry there were a lot of explosives at the premises on the day. According to Jacobs, there was a limit capacity of explosives in the facility of 2,500, but on the day of the incident, they were over the limit by one ton. Questions were also raised about why explosives were carried by deceased employer Nico Samuels in his vehicle and why a lighter was found on the premises. The legal representative for the families asked him if there was any urgency to mix products on the day and Jacobs replied: "Yes. They didn't explain why there was such a rush but I could see everyone was in a hurry. We were all required to work overtime."

  • Read the full original of the report in the above regard by Marvin Charles at News24

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