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Wits worker dies after inhaling extinguisher fumes set off during protest

Student’s released a fire extinguisher on Tuesday before the cleaner was rushed to hospital.

Senete house at University of Witwatersrand. Picture Kgothatso Mogale/EWN.

JOHANNESBURG - Wits University has confirmed the death of one of its workers who died after inhaling fumes from an extinguisher which was released.

It's understood the cleaner had been working at the Jubilee Hall last week when protesting students allegedly released one of the fire extinguishers.

The worker was treated on the campus before being rushed to hospital but died shortly after being discharged.

The Wits SRC has sent messages of condolences to the family of the worker, saying their hearts are truly saddened by the news.

The group says it will now reflect on the methods used by protesters to ensure everyone's safety.

Wits university spokesperson Shirona Patel says, "Last Tuesday, students released a fire extinguisher in the Jubilee Hall of residence, which affected a cleaner in the building. The cleaner was rushed to the campus health and wellness centre and then taken to hospital where he was treated for a few days. The cleaner was discharged from hospital and then passed away."

The cause of the worker's death is being investigated.

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