Firefighters in Venezuela are desperately trying to control a blaze at an oil refinery after the death toll reached 41 yesterday, according to reports.
Two oil tanks at the state-owned Petróleos de Venezuela (PDVSA) refinery were engulfed by flames after a gas leak caused an explosion on Saturday, reports said. A third tank subsequently caught fire.
Venezuela’s President Hugo Chavez said earlier today the fire at one of the tanks at the Amuay refinery was extinguished.
He wrote in a series of tweets: “at this time, the fire has been extinguished in the tank 200 Amuay!”
He added: “The work of extinguishing the fire in the tank 203, advancing by 75%! And we continue with our heroic firefighters battling PDVSA!”
Rafael Ramirez, Minister of Petroleum and Mining, who is also President of PDVSA, said in a statement on PDVSA’s website yesterday: “All our experts are in the area and we will stay there until the situation culminates”.