Scotland's Grangemouth oil refinery catches fire

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Saturday, May 10, 2008

An overview of the refinery.

Grangemouth oil refinery in Scotland has seen a fire, which has since been extinguished. The facility was operating at 80% of its 200,000 barrel per day capacity after operations were shut down for a two-day strike last month.

A spokesman for Ineos, who operate the site, said that it was expected that the fire would delay the restoration of full operations at the plant. According to a spokesman from the Central Scotland Fire and Rescue Service said it is believed that the fire began after oil spilt from the hydrocracker onto hot pipework. The hydrocracker is used to break down thicker hydrocarbons into lighter variants, and in this way produces products such as diesel and aviation fuel. The fire was on the diesel line.

The plant, which is located on the Firth of Forth, was previously expected to be running at full capacity by May 18. The fire, which the Ineos spokesman described as a "very small incident", started at 2:10am and was extinguished by 5:00am.

Ineos, who purchased the site from BP in 2005, are investigating.