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Chevron's refinery in Wales remains fully operational following an explosion and fire

June 03/2011

(ICIS) -- Chevron's 220.000 bbl/day UK refinery at Pembroke in Wales remains fully operational following an explosion and fire at the site which killed four workers, the company said on Friday. The blast happened at 18:20 local time (17:20GMT) on Thursday in a 730 cbm (cubic metre) storage tank while maintenance work was being carried out, local police said. "The refinery remains fully operational, however, we would emphasise that at this difficult time, our main priority is the welfare of our employees," Chevron said in a statement.

Police and the UK's Health and Safety Executive (HSE) are jointly investigating the cause of the explosion, however early indications suggest it was a "tragic industrial accident", Chief Superintendent Gwyn Thomas, of Dyfed Powys Police, said. A fifth contract worker is being treated in hospital for serious injuries sustained in the blast, which also damaged an adjacent storage tank. 

Chevron has agreed to sell the refinery to US-based Valero for USD 730m (EUR 504m). The deal is expected to close in the third quarter. Valero said on Thursday it was too early to know what effects, if any, the incident will have on the sale.

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