A lightning strike ignited two storage tanks Monday morning in an eight-hour blaze at an oil refinery in south central Spain, local media report.
In-house firefighters dealt with the bulk of the emergency at the Repsol refinery in Puertollano.
At about 9:45 a.m., a thunderstorm moved through the area resulting in a lightning strike on three storage tanks. Two of the tanks containing petroleum residue ignited, producing a heavy column of smoke.
Adjacent tanks, normally full of fuel, were fortunately empty, limiting the spread of the fire, local media report.
No injures were reported from the fire. An internal emergency plan that included air quality monitoring was activated. Local government advised that people with respiratory diseases take appropriate precautions and not leave their homes unless necessary.
At 5:33 p.m. Repsol announced that the fire had been extinguished.
At least 50 emergency personnel, most of them Repsol employees, participated in extinguishing the fire. The company also collaborated with the staff of Ciudad Real Emergency 1006. Eight fire engines, two high-capacity pumps and several portable fire fighting vehicles were on hand.
Repsol reported that an investigation is being conducted into the cause of the fire. The company, based in Madrid, owns five refineries in Spain.
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