AP government to issue notice to HPCL over fire in Vizag refinery

Published: 04th September 2013 03:28 PM  |   Last Updated: 04th September 2013 03:28 PM   |  A+A-

By PTI

The Directorate of Factories of Andhra Pradesh will be seeking an explanation from the Vizag facility of the state-owned Hindustan Petroleum (HPCL), on the recent fire in the refinery-cum-petrochemical complex there, which left 24 workers dead, a senior official said on Wednesday.

According to G Bala Kishore, Director of Factories, the department is investigating into the blaze following which they will issue a notice to the facility seeking an explanation for the accident.

"Notice is yet to be served. Investigation has to be completed. We are short of details. After we come to know the facts of the case, we will issue notices," Kishore told PTI, adding that they will also look into the safety measures undertaken by the facility.

"The nature of accident is intriguing. They (HPCL management) will have to give us a clarification. Based on their reply to our notice, we may seek Government permission to prosecute them," the official added.

On August 23 a massive fire broke out at the sprawling HPCL complex in Vishakhapatnam, when mostly staffers from private companies were at work.

Prima facie, a gas leak in the sea cooling water system was attributed to the fire even though probe is on into the incident.

Besides Vishakhapatnam, (East Coast) with a capacity of 8.3 Million Metric Ton Per Annum (MMTPA), HPCL operates another refinery in Mumbai (West Coast) with a capacity of 6.5 MMTPA.

HPCL currently operates two major refineries producing a wide variety of petroleum fuels and specialities.

Meanwhile the Vizag Refinery which is currently operating at 50 per cent capacity after the fire mishap is expected to take some more time to scale up to full of its capacity, HPCL Executive Director VVR Narasimham said.

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