• Enock Bii was manually cleaning a boiler at a milk factory in Sachangwan on May 30
• Sources say another employee switched on the boiler; Bii suffered 87 per cent burns
It was an emotional scene when the casket of a 26-year-old milk factory worker who died of severe burns from a steam boiler was collected from War Memorial Hospital in Nakuru on Monday.
Family, friends and sympathisers braved the chilly weather to collect the remains for the burial on Tuesday at his father’s farm in Keringet, Kuresoi.
Enock Bii, the third born in a family of six, was cleaning the boiler at a milk factory in Sachangwan on May 30. He was instructed by his supervisor to clean the boiler manually although the job is normally done mechanically.
Sources at the milk factory belonging to Sameer Agricultural and Livestock Limited said an employee switched on the boiler as Bii cleaned it. He suffered 87 per cent burns.
“A few days ago, we tragically lost one of our members in Sachangwan through enormous human error. The boiler was accidentally switched on while Bii was still inside," the factory workers who sought anonymity said.
"He was taken to St Joseph Hospital in Molo on May 31 before being transferred to Nakuru’s War Memorial Hospital where he died on Saturday.”
Bii's father, John Rono, said his son died so painfully.
“I have been having sleepless nights since the incident happened. I cannot comprehend. It feels like a bad dream, now coming to pick the remains of my son to bury, ooooh no! It can’t be!” the said.
Patricia Musale, the hospital’s matron, said the patient was received in critical condition.
"The body showed fresh burns from hot liquid affecting the head, upper limbs, back...The total burnt surface is estimated at 87 per cent,” a report by pathologist Titus Ngulungu reads.
"He has left behind a wife and a nine-month-old baby and other dependants,” Rono said.
Sheila Koech, a supervisor at the milk plant, declined to comment when reached for comment.
A law firm representing the family demanded an explanation on what transpired at the plant.
Lawyer Winnie Lang’at of Kamoing and Company Advocates said the company’s management has been reluctant to explain the circumstances in which Bii died.
“It is not clear why the company is yet to report to the authorities, despite Bii having been burnt while at work. I am planning to file the matter in court for justice immediately after the burial on Wednesday morning,” she said.
The incident was reported at Salgaa police post via Occurrence Book Number 13/01/06/2019.
Rongai subcounty police commander Richard Rotich said the management had been instructed to record a statement by Monday.
“I am aware of the incident that is under investigation,”Rotich said.
The deceased’s family wants justice.
“We want the company to tell us what transpired on the fateful day. We wonder why they haven’t recorded a statement,” Bii’s father said.