Explosion and Fire at French Oil Products Factory Leaves One Person in Critical Condition

A blast followed by a fire on Wednesday at a French factory handling hazardous materials resulted in at least one individual sustaining critical injuries, as reported by local authorities.

The exact cause behind the explosion, which produced a large plume of gray smoke visible across the vicinity, is presently under investigation.

Firefighters swiftly brought the flames under control subsequent to the explosion at the Saipol oil products facility situated in the port area of Sete, along the Mediterranean coast, as stated by the regional prefecture of Herault.

A single employee of the factory was admitted to the hospital in critical condition, while approximately 200 others were evacuated from the premises following the explosion, the prefecture disclosed. Environmental authorities are conducting tests to assess potential air and soil contamination.

According to the official statement, the explosion took place within a warehouse designated for the production of fuel derived from grains, during a period of closure for maintenance purposes.

This facility is part of the Seveso system, an European initiative mandating additional safety protocols for establishments handling hazardous substances.

Image source: Saipol