Iran reports third oil sector blast accident

AFP , Saturday 29 Oct 2011

Media in Iran on Saturday reports a blast at a southwest oil field, the third such explosion in the country in 24 hours attributed to accidents, including one that killed a worker

Iran's latest explosion occurred Friday on a pipeline injecting gas into an oil field in the province of Khuzestan, the Mehr news agency said. Nobody was reported to be hurt, and the resulting fire was put out.

"The pipeline busted because its wall had been thinned due to corrosion," Abdolamir Hoveyzavi, the managing director of the National Iranian South company, told Mehr.

Also on Friday, an explosion at a state-run oil field in the Bibi Hakimieh oil field in southern Iran killed one worker and injured three others, while a refinery in central Iran was hit by a fire, the Mehr news agency reported.

The deadly blast at Bibi Hakimieh was caused by a build-up of gas released during drilling, Mehr said.

The other explosion Friday occurred at the Shazand oil refinery in central Iran, the news agency said without giving further details.

Accidents in Iranian oil and gas facilities are common.

Several explosions were reported last year in Iranian oil and gas infrastructure, including one at the major Abadan oil refinery during a visit by President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad that killed one worker and injured 25 others.

Ahmadinejad was unaffected by the blast, which was blamed on officials attempting to hastily inaugurate a new unit.

In September last year, 10 people were killed in a gas pipeline explosion near Iran's northeastern city of Mashhad.

There have also been reported instances of sabotage to infrastructure, including two cases this year on the main pipeline bringing gas from southern Iran to Tehran, according to Iranian media. The perpetrators were not identified.

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