BP Process Unit Blast at Refinery

Friday, August 29, 2014 @ 04:08 PM gHale

“An operational incident on a process unit” at the BP Whiting refinery in Whiting, IN, led to one worker going to the hospital Wednesday night.

A Whiting Fire Department spokesman said an explosion occurred at 9:05 p.m. and residents could hear it clearly several blocks from the plant. People as far as two miles away reported feeling the explosion.

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But the fire spokesman said when Whiting Fire commanders called the plant to ask if they needed any help, plant officials told them to stand by and that BP was handling it internally with its own fire department and ambulances.

BP spokesman Scott Dean confirmed the refinery experienced “an operational incident on a process unit on the north end of the refinery.”

The refinery’s in-house fire department put the fire out by 11 p.m. One employee went to the hospital as a precaution, but ended up released.

The explosion came exactly 59 years after a massive fire at the refinery, then known as the Standard Oil Refinery. Two people died and the surrounding neighborhood suffered severe damage from the fire.

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