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Baseefa Ltd

No injuries reported after explosion at Shell refinery in Germany

10 January 2014

An explosion ripped through a Shell refinery outside Cologne on January 9 causing a fire and large smoke column, but no injuries were reported, officials said. A tank containing toluene, a solvent, caught fire at the Rheinland refinery in the Godorf district of the city of Cologne at around 15.00 local time (14.00 GMT), a Shell statement said.

An emergency service operation got underway and local residents were warned to close doors and windows and stay indoors until further notice, it added.

City authorities said in a statement that the blaze had been brought under control within less than 90 minutes. "As far as we know no one was injured by the explosion," they added.

The cause of the explosion was still unclear on the morning of January 10, Welt reported. "We will be investigating the cause and bringing in outside experts," refinery manager Wulf Spitzley told the newspaper.

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