An Echelon Media Company
Wednesday July 6th, 2022

Fifth fuel queue death reported in cash-strapped Sri Lanka

File photo of fuel queue in Sri Lanka

ECONOMYNEXT – The death of an 84-year-old resident from Athurugiriya on Sunday (27) brought the death toll at Sri Lanka’s fuel lines to five, police media confirmed.

The man was waiting in line at a filling station in Athurugiriya on Sunday, and reportedly did not move forward to get fuel after the vehicle in front of him had passed. Police media stated that he was found dead in his car, still clutching 3,000 rupees in cash to pay for fuel. The official cause of death was ruled as a heart attack.

He is survived by his children and grandchildren.

This is the fifth fuel line death in a week, and the fourth involving a senior citizen. The past four deaths occurred within 48 hours of each other, with one being a murder, where the 29-year-old victim was stabbed to death following an argument at the fuel line.

In the midst of power cuts that can last up to seven hours, price hikes as a result of a severe devaluation of the rupee, and a shortage in fuels like cooking gas and diesel, ordinary Sri Lankans are finding it increasingly difficult to go about their daily lives. Queues snake around fuel stations in the country, and many people are reported to be eating out as there was no gas to cook with.

The fuel used up to power generators during the nation’s frequent power cuts do nothing to help with the gas shortage. Vehicle owners reported a rationing going on in fuel stations around the country, as attendants declined to fill up barrels of petrol.

Sri Lanka is also in a severe debt crisis, as indiscriminate money printing and dwindling forex reserves take a toll on the island nation. (Colombo/Mar28/2022)

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