31 Oct 2009

Fatal fire at oil depot

10:00 am on 31 October 2009

A fire at an oil depot in the state of Rajasthan in west India has killed at least five people and injured 150.

The army has been called in to help firefighters battle the blaze and rescue those still trapped inside the depot, 10km south of the city of Jaipur.

Nearby residents have been evacuated and officials say they have cut electricity to the entire city as a precaution.

The fire, broke out broke out on Thursday evening, and it was still raging early on Friday. Officials said it quickly spread beyond the depot, engulfing adjoining factories.

It's unclear what caused the blaze, but residents say they heard huge explosions before the flames erupted.

The BBC reports stocks of gasoline, kerosene and diesel are held at the depot for state-owned oil companies.