27 Aug 2012

Refinery fire still burning

9:05 am on 27 August 2012

Two tanks are still on fire at the Amuay refinery in northern Venezuela after a gas leak set off an explosion, which left 41 people dead and more than 80 injured.

However, state oil company officials said they have the situation under control.

Mining Minister Rafael Ramirez said operations could resume within two days of the site being declared safe.

Black smoke continued to rise from the refinery on Sunday, as the number of dead rose from 39 to 41.

The explosion occurred at 1.15am on Saturday when a gas leak created a cloud that ignited. Nine storage tanks were originally on fire.

Amuay is part of the Paraguana refining center. It produces 645,000 barrels per day.

An investigation has been ordered into the cause of the leak.