Carbon monoxide may have caused Enyobeni Tavern deaths - Paul O’Sullivan

Independent forensic pathologist Paul O’Sullivan said there is a possibility that those who died during the early hours of last weekend may not have picked up the smell.

The Enyobeni tavern in Scenery Park, East London where 21 people died during an event on 25 June 2022. Picture: Nhlanhla Mabasa/Eyewitness News

CAPE TOWN - An independent forensic pathologist says there is a possibility that carbon monoxide may have led to the deaths of 21 young people at Enyobeni Tavern.

Independent forensic pathologist Paul O’Sullivan said that there was a possibility that those who died during the early hours of last weekend may not have picked up the smell.

While investigations into the massacre continue, the South African Police Service has also urged the public not to make their own conclusions.

Reports suggest that a petrol generator was found at the Enyobeni Tavern in Scenery Park in East London.

O’Sullivan said that those who died during the early hours of last weekend may have not initially picked up the carbon monoxide smell.

"There is a smell. If I take you into a closed space and there is a generator or something running in there you will be able to smell the fume. But the problem is if you're drinking alcohol and you know that there is a generator running, you may ignore the fumes or you may ignore the smell," O'Sullivan said.

The Eastern Cape Health Department has confirmed that samples have been taken for testing, with an autopsy into the cause of the deaths expected soon.