The Tema Oil Refinery (TOR) says it lost 300 metric tons of Naphtha from the inferno that gutted its pipelines on Tuesday afternoon and the loss is estimated at 280 000 dollars.
Ms Aba Lokko, the Communications Director of TOR, said Naphtha was not a product used in the country but basically for export and was surprised why the young men were scooping it.
Naphtha is a highly combustible liquid made from distilling petroleum. It looks like gasoline and is used to dilute heavy oil to help move through pipelines, to make high octane gas and even to clean metal.
According to her the leakage of the pipe was reported at 1400 hours yesterday but people nearby said the leakage had been there for the past two days.
Mr. Emmanuel Armah Kofi Buah, Minister of Energy and Petroleum, said at a press conference that the Ministry had mandated the Safety and Maintenance Unit of TOR to conduct integrity test and hardness test to determine whether the pipelines that got burnt should be replaced or repaired.
He said a committee had also been established comprising the Ghana National Fire Service (GNFS), National Petroleum Authority (NPA),National Association of Disaster Management (NADMO), TOR, Ministry of Energy and Petroleum and National Security to ascertain the real cause of the fire and make recommendations to prevent future occurrence of such incidents.
According to him, the committee has two weeks to produce its report and have to provide an interim report for the first week of its work..
He also acknowledged the responsiveness of the sister companies who supported TOR with their firefighting equipment to help quench the fire that lasted for two hours.
Mr. Easmon Asamoah, Acting Managing Director of TOR, said the Refinery had enough stocks to supply its customers and that the fire outbreak would not affect supply, adding that activities of the refinery have been restored to normalcy.
He said security patrol would be intensified and the number of security personnel who would be at post to ensure the safety of the place would be increased.
According to him, the refinery is conducting its own investigations to compliment the work of the ministerial committee. GNA