A pipeline belonging to the Pipelines and Products Marketing Company (PPMC) exploded on Saturday evening around Adeje, an oil hub in Okpe Local Government Area of Delta State, leaving scores of oil engineers with severe burns.
THEWILL gathered that the pipeline burst into flames as engineers from the PPMC, a subsidiary of the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC), were repairing a vandalized portion of the pipeline which conveys products to the PPMC’s depot in Benin City, Edo State.
THEWILL has not been able to independently confirm whether there are fatalities as the victims have been transported to the Delta State University teaching Hospital Oghara, Ethiope West LGA.
Witnesses told THEWILL that the pipeline was vandalized some weeks ago by oil thieves.
The huge ball of black smoke billowing from the scene of the explosion was visible on the Benin/Warri highway as it enveloped the road.
“The fire was raging, and there was no sign of a firefighting team when we passed there about 30minutes ago,” a commercial bus driver plying the route told THEWILL.
It was not clear if the fire had been put out when filing this report.
THEWILL recalls that a similar fire had gutted the supply line of PPMC in Adeje in 2008 after major criminal attacks on the Warri/Benin flow line conveying petroleum products to Warri/Benin and other parts of the country.