HCM CITY — Three oil tanker drivers working for two Petrolimex subsidiaries in HCM City have been suspended for allegedly stealing petrol while transporting it.
|Authorities inspect a petrol station in Ha Noi. Petrol stealing and motorbike and car explosions have prompted the Ministry of Science and Technology to start a nationwide inspection on petrol quality. — VNA/VNS Photo Tran Viet
The Viet Nam National Petroleum Group, as Petrolimex is formally known, on Monday instructed its subsidiaries to investigate after Thanh Nien (Young People) newspaper reported that several drivers colluded with outsiders to steal fuel.
The report said the crew of a particular tanker, with number plate 57K-8275, went to a spot in District 7 where petrol was taken out and filled in eight 50-litre plastic cans.
Another liquid was pumped into the truck to replace the stolen quantity, it added.
The truck belongs to the Petroleum Mechanical Joint Stock Company, one of the Petrolimex subsidiaries.
Upon questioning, the driver of the truck, Vo Minh Toan, and his assistant, Vu Duc Thuan, admitted to stealing the fuel, and were suspended.
Petrolimex Sai Gon Transport and Service Joint Stock Company, another subsidiary, suspended Pham Anh Tuan and Cao Thanh Tam, both drivers, on similar grounds.
Vuong Thai Dung, deputy general director of Petrolimex, told Thanh Nien on Monday that the drivers had admitted to stealing the oil.
Further investigation was required to find out if they had added something, he said, adding Petrolimex has asked the police to begin criminal proceedings.
On Monday Tran Minh Dung, head of the Ministry of Science and Technology's Inspectorate, said the ministry would undertake inspection of petrol quality around the country.
It was already testing 3,000 samples to find out if the rash of recent vehicle fires were related to fuel quality, he said.
The ministry would announce the cause of the fires by January 23, he promised. — VNS