Explosion rocks BP refinery in Indiana

An explosion and subsequent fire rocked BP’s oil refinery in Whiting, Ind., late Wednesday, but the company said operations have continued.

The fire started at about 9 p.m. at BP’s largest refinery in the United States, and was put out by 10:55 p.m. by the refinery’s own personnel, BP told the Chicago Tribune.


Refining operations “were minimally impacted as a result of the incident and the refinery continues to produce products for customers,” the company said.

The explosion was caused by “an operational incident” at a processing unit. The company was still investigating the cause as of Thursday morning, the Tribune said.

One worker was taken to the hospital after the incident, and has been released.

The blast could be heard from blocks away. The local fire department offered help but was told to stand by instead.

The 413,500-barrel-per-day refinery underwent a major overhaul last year to improve its ability to process cheaper heavy crude from Canada.

The facility suffered a malfunction in March that caused about 1,600 gallons of oil to spill into Lake Michigan.