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shell borneo explosiom injures 12
Posted at 10:03 p.m. PST Thursday, December 25, 1997
Shell shuts Malaysia plant after explosion
KUALA LUMPUR, Dec 26 (Reuters) - A Malaysian unit of Royal Dutch
Shell said on Friday it had shut down a plant on Borneo island after an
explosion injured 12 people and set tanks on fire.
The explosion occurred at about 10:50 p.m. (1450 GMT) on Thursday at
Shell MDS Malaysia Sdn Bhd's 400,000-tonne middle distillate synthesis
plant in Bintulu town in Sarawak state.
`The plant has been shut down for safety and security reasons as well as
for damage control and assessment,'' Shell Companies of Malaysia said in
a statement on Friday.
A Shell spokeswoman in the capital Kuala Lumpur said the plant converted
natural gas into liquid hydrocarbons.
Two tanks were still burning at around 1:00 p.m. (0500 GMT) on Friday.
``Two tanks are on fire,'' a Shell spokesman in Bintulu told Reuters by
telephone. ``We are still trying to contain the fire.''
Investigations had been launched to establish the cause of the fire, the
company statement said.
Four Shell employees were injured and a local hospital reported eight
members of the public were treated for injuries, Shell said.
The spokesman said two of those injured were in stable condition in
hospital. ``The rest have been released,'' he said.
The plant is a joint venture between Shell Gas BV, Petroliam Nasional Bhd
(Petronas), Mitsubishi and the Sarawak state government. REUTERS