Pertamina investigates fire at Balikpapan refinery V

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Balikpapan, E Kalimantan (ANTARA) – State-owned oil and gas company PT Pertamina is conducting an internal probe into the fire that engulfed one of the pipes at its Refinery Unit V (RU V) in Balikpapan, East Kalimantan Province, on Thursday morning.

Pertamina’s spokesperson, Heppy Wulansari, said the fire was localized and its main line had been extinguished, but the cause of the accident would be known after the internal investigators finish their work.

Sparks were first detected around 9.30 a.m. local time, and Pertamina firefighters managed to handle the accident, she added.

The fire has extended Pertamina’s experience in handling accidents. In July, the company halted operations and removed workers from a gas drilling platform in the Pertamina Hulu Energi Offshore North West Java (PHE ONWJ) block because of a dangerous ‘well kick’, or gas release.

The ‘well kick’ occurred in the re-activated YYA-1, located beneath the PHE ONWJs offshore platform, two kilometers north of Karawang.

The oil spill from the YYA-1 well in the PHE ONWJ block, located offshore from the Java Sea, affected Karawang and Bekasi waters.

Local fishermen could not catch fish due to the oil spill, and hence, they were asked to help clean the waters.

PT Pertamina has probed the cause of the gas release from the YYA-1 well in West Java that led to the oil spill.

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