Wednesday, April 23, 2014


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Death Toll In Venezuelan Refinery Blast Reaches 41

Residents of the area said the explosion was so powerful they first believed a strong earthquake had hit the area.
Residents of the area said the explosion was so powerful they first believed a strong earthquake had hit the area.
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Fires continue to burn at an oil refinery in Venezuela, the site of a deadly explosion on August 25.

At least 41 people died and dozens were injured in the blast at the Amuay refinery in the northern state of Falcon, one of the biggest in the world.

Officials said the blast occurred when a gas leak created a cloud that ignited.

Residents of the area said the explosion was so powerful they first believed a strong earthquake had hit the area. More than 200 homes were damaged by the shockwave.

Jaua said among the dead were 18 National Guard soldiers who were part of a unit assigned to guard the refinery.

The Amuay refinery is one of the biggest in the world, producing some 645,000 barrels a day.

Mining Minister Rafael Ramirez said operations could resume within two days of the site being declared safe.

He said fuel and oil supplies in the country would not be affected as the state had enough stockpile to cover the shortfall.

A committee has been set up to investigate the cause of the leak.

President Hugo Chavez has declared three days of national mourning.



Based on reporting by AP and AFP
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