Explosion kills 7 at Nigerian state-run oil facility

Workers climb scaffolding surrounding a storage tank at the under-construction Dangote Industries Ltd. oil refinery and fertilizer plant site in the Ibeju Lekki district, outside of Lagos, Nigeria, on Thursday, July 5, 2018. The $10 billion refinery, set to be one of the worlds largest and process 650,000 barrels of crude a day, should be near full capacity by mid-2020, Devakumar Edwin, group executive director at Dangote Industries said in an interview. Photographer: Tom Saater/Bloomberg via Getty Images
An oil-worker stands at a plant in Nigeria’s Port Harcourt. The country is Africa’s largest producer, accounting for roughly two million barrels of crude daily. AFP PHOTO / FLORIAN PLAUCHEUR / GETTY IMAGES)

Nigeria’s state-run oil firm on Wednesday said a detailed investigation has been launched into the cause of an explosion that killed seven people at one of its joint venture facilities in the southern part of the country.

The explosion reported by the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) occurred at Gbetiokun OML 40 on Tuesday, according to an official statement. The facility is operated by the Nigerian Petroleum Development Company (NPDC) on behalf of the NPDC/Elcrest Joint Venture.

The blast happened during the installation of a ladder on a platform of the Benin River Valve Station for access during the discharging of Gbetiokun production, the official statement by NNPC said.