HYDERABAD, India (AP) — A biofuel manufacturing plant caught fire in southern India, triggering explosions in biodiesel tanks and forcing around 150 workers to flee the facility, officials said Wednesday.
As flames rose and a giant column of black smoke filled the air, dozens of navy firefighters joined civil authorities to try to douse the fire, which started Tuesday night, said Rajesh Shetty, an Indian navy officer.
Shetty said the fire was under control, but that it would take several hours for it to be extinguished.
Yuva Raj, a local administrator, said six tanks of biodiesel fuel that caught fire have burned out, but that six others were still burning at the Biomax Fuels Ltd. plant near Vishakhapatnam, a port city in Andhra Pradesh state.
Efforts were being made to prevent the fire from engulfing another six biodiesel tanks at the plant, located 750 kilometers (470 miles) northeast of Hyderabad, the state capital, Raj said.
Raj said no injuries have been reported. The cause of the fire was not immediately known.
Fires are common in India due to a lack of proper safety standards.