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Fire burns out of control at Philadelphia refinery

A fire was burning out of control at an oil refinery in Pennsylvania on Friday morning, a Philadelphia fire department official said, as local media reported a series of explosions on site.

NBC Philadelphia said the "massive" blaze at the 335,000 barrels per day Philadelphia Energy Solutions refinery was visible from miles away and triggered explosions that were felt as far away as South Jersey.

The crude section at the Girard Point portion of the refinery was shut down due to the fire, intelligence provider Genscape said.

There were no immediate reports of casualties at the complex, which the NBC affiliate said employs around 1,000 people.

A company spokeswoman was not immediately available for comment.

Three fire stations and a hazardous materials response crew were mobilised, the fire department official said.

Nearby roads were closed off and thick smokes blanketed most of central and South Philadelphia, NBC Philadelphia said.

"Philadelphia Fire Department is asking residents and businesses east of the fire location in South Philadelphia to shelter in place until further notice," the City of Philadelphia Office of Emergency Management said in a tweet.

Reporting by Nallur Sethuraman

Jun 21, 2019

 

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