AMMAN (Reuters) – Syrian civil defense teams have extinguished a huge fire that swept a number of oil tankers loading crude oil from an installation near the country’s main Homs refinery after a blast that hit the depot area, state media said.
An explosion had earlier on Tuesday hit a government-owned crude oil transportation company in the city and oil tankers loading crude oil from the installation then caught fire, state media reported.
Oil Minister Bassam Touma said an unknown explosion that hit a tanker that was offloading crude oil to Homs refinery ended up engulfing seven oil tankers.
"The company and the refinery are fine,” Touma told state media as state television relayed live footage of the fires.
The governor of Homs, Bassam Barsik, was earlier quoted on state media as saying civil defense teams were working on extinguishing the fire that erupted during "the loading of crude oil”.
"There are no human casualties and we are working on containing the spread of the fire,” Barsik said.
Both Homs refinery alongside Banias on the Mediterranean coast are currently facing supply shortages due to erratic supplies to the sanctions-hit country.