A huge fire broke out on Sunday morning at an oil refinery in the eastern Iranian province of South Khorasan, leading to the simultaneous explosion of several gas condensates reservoirs, the semi-official Tasnim news agency reported.
The fire started at one of the reservoirs of the mini-refinery, which is located in Birjand Special Economic Zone, at 8:45 a.m. local time (0515 GMT), the report said.
Firefighting, rescue and emergency teams were dispatched to the scene immediately, while firefighters were trying to contain the fire, it spread to other nearby reservoirs, causing them to explode simultaneously, added the report.
“Five firefighting groups as well as a number of fire engines are at the scene trying to cool the nearby reservoirs down to prevent the further spread of the blaze,” Tasnim quoted Birjand’s Governor Ali Fazelifard as saying.
He added the refinery had been completely evacuated to minimize potential human casualties, noting the cause of the incident had not been determined yet.
According to Tasnim, the refinery belongs to the Azaran Sanaat Barsava company, which produces light and heavy hydrocarbons using gas condensates.