U.S. refinery explosion and fire injures 15, causes evacuation

U.S. refinery explosion and fire injures 15, causes evacuation

U.S. refinery explosion and fire injures 15, causes evacuation

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Over the next several hours, a series of explosions followed, setting off a raging fire that burned for hours and sent up a plume of noxious, oily smoke that spread for more than 30 miles and prompted the city to order a mandatory evacuation that lasted until 6 a.m. Friday.

Thick, black smoke could be seen for miles from the facility. All Superior schools closedFriday due to the fire.

The refinery had additional workers on site preparing for a plant-wide overhaul when the blast occurred, the spokesman said.

Authorities say a smoky refinery fire that forced many residents of Superior, Wisconsin to evacuate is out. It processes both heavy crude from the Canadian tar sands in Alberta and lighter North Dakota Bakken crude.

The refinery, which dates back to the early 1950s, has a processing capacity of around 50,000 barrels per day and a storage capacity of 3.6 million barrels of crude and products.

The refinery, built in 1950, employs about 180 people in the production of gasoline, diesel fuel, motor oils and asphalt, according to the U.S. Energy Information Administration. Thursday, April 26, 2018.

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"Since the fire was put out, data shows that there are no elevated levels of chemicals monitored", the Wisconsin DNR reported in a news release.

It was unclear how severe the reported injuries were and exactly how many of those people were transported to the hospital for treatment.

Neighbors near the oil refinery posted on Facebook the explosion shook their homes.

"Anything that goes on at the refinery we're alarmed about, because there's a potential for a huge disaster over there", said Forslund.

The US Chemical Safety Board has deployed a four-person team to investigate the incident.

The duration and extent of the toxic hazard depends on a variety of factors, such as wind direction and speed, proximity to the refinery and weather events that can trap pollution close to the ground, said Elena Craft, senior health scientist for the Environmental Defense Fund. "Our thoughts are with those who were injured, and their families". Husky's first priority is the safety of its people, the community and emergency responders. "We also appreciate the support of businesses, and city and county authorities".

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