18 killed in Indonesia oil well fire

Jakarta: At least 18 people were killed and 41 injured on Wednesday after a fire broke out in an oil well in the Indonesian province of Aceh in Sumatra, officials said.

Five buildings burnt down in the fire that erupted early in the morning during an extraction process in Pasir Puti village when several workers were cleaning up an oil spill due to overproduction, according to the office of the Indonesian National Board for Disaster Management (BPBD) in Aceh.

The BPBD said on Wednesday evening that the fire was yet to be extinguished. Those injured and the bodies of the dead were taken to three hospitals in the region, Efe news reported.

The agency said it was “still collecting data on the number of victims because the fire was still not extinguished”.

Indonesian authorities, firefighters and state-owned energy company Pertamina were jointly working to extinguish the column of fire more than 10 metres high, according to images released by the disaster agency.

An investigation was launched to determine the cause of the blaze.