Early morning blaze sparks investigation at oil refinery

by Jack Matthews

The Nynas oil refinery in Dundee was closed today, for the second time in the last year, after a fire broke out in the early hours of this morning.

Firefighters from Tayside fire and rescue service were called to the scene of the blaze, which broke out at around 0140 on Wednesday 10 November.

Oil tanks at a Nynas oil depot

Around 30 firefighters attended the scene and the fire was brought under control by around 0300.  Firefighters remained at the scene until 0950 to ensure that no further fires broke out and that the area was safe.

Paul Adby, a spokesperson for Nynas said in an official statement released by the company: “There was a small fire at the Nynas refinery in Dundee.  There were no injuries and the fire was extinguished promptly by Tayside fire and rescue service.

“A detailed investigation involving Nynas and Tayside fire and rescue is underway.  The process plant has been shut down to allow the investigation to proceed”

A press release from Tayside fire and rescue said: “The fire was confined to the Distillation Plant within the premises and involved a pump which leaked crude oil which subsequently ignited.  The fire involved approximately 2000 litres of burning crude oil which had leaked from the pump.”

This latest incident comes less than a year after the plant was forced to shut down after a blaze.  Two separate fires at Bitumen tanks last December within one week of each other lead to the plant’s closure.  An investigation at the time found that the water level in the crude oil had been too high and this caused the tanks to overheat and ignite.

Nynas are one of the largest European suppliers of bitumen. A Swedish based company, their operations stretch around the world.