One person was burnt beyond recognition and another seriously injured when gutted the loading bay of the Tema Oil Refinery (TOR) mid morning yesterday, January 19, 2010
Three of the five loading racks of the refinery and nine trucks got burnt completely. The victims were not immediately identified. Ms. Aba Lokko, Head of Public relations of TOR, told newsmen that the operations of the company would not be disturbed since trucks would be loaded with fuel products from the Bulk Oil Storage Transport (BOST) which is outside the premises of TOR.
“As we speak, our engineers are assessing the extent of damage to the refinery while arrangement to load trucks from BOST are already concluded,” she said. Although the cause of the fire was not immediately know, some of the workers who were at the scene believed a spark might have caused the loud explosion seconds before the fire started.
Deputy Chief Fire Officer, Albert Brown Gaisie, briefing the press, said six tenders were dispatched from Tema Regional Fire Station on receiving a call from TOR at 10:11am. The tenders got to the scene at 10:17am and working with nine other tender from supporting agencies like the VRA, TOR, Immigration Service and Military, were able to put out the fire in 20 minutes.
He said the main refinery had not been affected but reckoned that the cost of damage could be considerably very high. One source told the “Times” that a premix tanker, which was being loaded, was suddenly moved by the driver without warning. Soon after that, a big band was heard. “We subsequently saw the place in flames which started spreading from the first rack, where the finished products were being loaded to the second and third,” the source said.
Some people also attributed the spark to the weak lines connecting the main refinery to the loading rack, saying a spillover along the lines, could have caused an outbreak at the loading rack.
As at press time the management of the refinery was in a meeting and therefore could not be reached for their further comments.
Source: The Ghanaian Times/Ghana
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