Guards’ vehicle stoned as protest turns ugly

September 02 2010
The motor services industry strike turned ugly as a group of strikers in Germiston attacked a security vehicle outside a local petrol station.

At around midday on Wednesday, a group of about 400 strikers at the Engen service station on Jack Road began throwing heavy objects at an ADT security vehicle which was guarding the service station.

“The car was destroyed,” said Netcare’s Chris Botha. “The windows were completely smashed – gone,” he said, “and there were several large dents in the vehicle.”

The two security guards who were in the vehicle managed to escape, and, according to Botha, no one was injured. “The crowd dispersed after police arrived,” he said.
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According to Warrant Officer William Masondo, the guards in the ADT vehicle had responded to a panic button pressed at the station, and were attacked shortly after arriving at the scene.

“The men managed to escape on foot by the time police got there,” said Masondo. “We could not arrest any suspects because there were too many people at the scene,” he said, “but we are still investigating.”

Masondo said CCTV footage taken at the petrol station should help the police identify the main group of attackers, who used large stones and bricks as weapons.

Workers in the motor services industry, including panelbeaters and petrol station attendants, began protesting at their places of employment yesterday. The workers are demanding a 15 percent wage increase, better working hours and a housing allowance.

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