Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Oil catastrophe in Venezuela

Today is the fourth day of the enormous fire at Venexuela’s biggest oil refinery. The devastating fire has already killed 48 people, and the president of Venezuela has declared three days of national mourning.  The fire started as a gas leak, which lead to an explosion. The fire started in two storage tanks, and the energy minister promised that the fire would be out in a couple of hours. But, instead another tank was set on fire shortly afterwards. “We must announce that a third tank... is on fire,” said Energy and Oil Minister Rafael Ramirez on Monday morning. Many people have questioned the maintenance of the facility. A gas leak should simply not happen at an oil refinery! However, the president of Venezuela, Hugo Chavez denied that facility is in a poor condition, and to the journalists that implied it, he said: “Lack of maintenance? Who could possibly say this? Only someone who is irresponsible.”

                                      The Amuay refinery produces 645,000 barrels of oil every day

The fire is also causing major environmental damages. 209 homes and 11 businesses close to the refinery has been affected, and many people have been forced to leave their houses and belongings. The fire and smoke is also letting out a lot of pollution and dangerous toxins into the atmosphere and water, causing problems for both the local people and wildlife. Even when the fire has stopped, there will be a lot of work left to clean up after the fire. However, president Hugo Chavez has promised that the refinery will be working again two days after the fire has been put under control. This morning he also said that the fire has now been reduced with 75%

This picture was taken only four hours ago.


  1. Wow, that is really a serious incident. Wonder how it will end. You have chosen some great illustrations to your story too.

  2. Well written text, and the last picture was really scarry and sad to look at. I feel so sorry for these people who live there, and I hope everything is going to be ok and that country will support these poor families!