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Fire erupts at Iraqi gas compressor, 1 dead

Basra, September 20, 2011

A fire broke out in a compression unit that supplies gas to Iraq's southern city of Basra on Tuesday and local oil police said one person was killed and nine others gravely injured.

"As a result of the gas compression unit fire, we have nine workers seriously wounded, some of them are suffering from severe burns," the oil police source said.

"Three others are still missing ... and one worker was killed," the source added.

Earlier, sources at Iraq's South Oil Company had said the fire was at a crude oil processing unit at the major Rumaila oilfield.

But oil major BP , the field's developer, later said the fire was at a gas compression facility in Rumaila, supplying Basra city with the fuel.

"This is not a crude facility ... this is a gas compression unit totally run and controlled by the Southern Gas Company," a BP official said.

South Oil Company sources later confirmed the fire was at a gas compression unit.

Rumaila oil field pumps almost half of Iraq's output and is being developed by BP and China National Petroleum Corp.

Rumaila has some 17 billion barrels in estimated crude reserves.

BP is one of the biggest players in Iraq involved in the push to increase the country's oil production levels to rival Opec's top producer Saudi Arabia. – Reuters




Tags: BP | Iraq | Basra | Fire | Rumaila |

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