Huge Blaze in Jaipur Oil Depot

Indian Oil Corporation building on fire at JaipurAt least five people were killed and over 100 injured when a ferocious blaze, with flames leaping up to the height of three or four-storeyed buildings, engulfed an Indian Oil Corporation (IOC) depot at Sitapura Industrial Area, 16 kilometers south of Jaipur, on Thursday night.

The fire, beginning with an explosion at around 7.30 p.m., reportedly due to a leaking pipeline, spread to at least 12 oil tanks in the vicinity, the police said. “Around 80 injured people have been admitted to hospital,” said Kanhaiya Lal, Assistant Director General (Crime).

The blast shattered windows of all houses within a three-km radius, police said. The area plunged into near darkness as the power was switched off as a precautionary measure.

The army has been called in to help with rescue operations. Major traffic jams on the highway delayed the arrival of reinforcements for rescue work.

“I am in touch with Rajasthan Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot and have offered him all possible assistance,” Murli Deora, Petroleum Minister, said. “Our specialised firefighting teams from others refineries are rushing to Jaipur to control the fire,” said Sarthak Behuria, IOC chairman.

IOC officials said it was difficult to quantify the loss so early, but setting up a new terminal the size of the one that caught fire would cost around Rs 150-200 crore. About 1 lakh kilolitres of petrol have also been lost.

Article taken from HT epaper

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