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1 Apr, 2015 14:38

Fire blazes on oil platform in Gulf of Mexico, 4 dead, multiple injuries reported

A fire broke out on an oil platform belonging to Mexico’s state Pemex petroleum giant in the Gulf of Mexico, leading to the evacuation of about 300 workers. According to the company at least four people have died and 16 have been injured.

Pemex said on Twitter that the fire on the Abkatun Permanente platform in the oil-rich Campeche Bay broke out overnight and eight firefighting boats were tackling the blaze.

At least four people have been killed and 16 have been injured in the blaze, the oil giant said. Two of them are in a serious condition.

However earlier,a spokesman for emergency services in Ciudad del Carmen said that least 45 people were injured.

The company spokesman said there has been no oil spill and that operations have been suspended at the platform, which produces 40,000 barrels per day.

The fire started in the dehydration and pumping area of the platform, though it was not clear what caused it.

The Abkatun Permanenteplatform forms part of the Abkatun-Pol-Chuc offshore complex. Production at the complex has fallen steadily since the 1990s to below 300,000 barrels per day in 2013, according to data from the US Energy Information Administration.

Imagen de la plataforma Abkatun Alfa de Campeche, incendiándose en estos momentos. @AristeguiOnline@SinEmbargoMXpic.twitter.com/rtopZ4lEf3

— Visit Riviera Maya (@TurismoRiviera) April 1, 2015

In recent years Pemex – Latin America’s second largest company - has suffered a number of accidents. At least 37 people were killed by a blast at the company's Mexico City headquarters in 2013.

Another fire in a Pemex natural gas facility in September 2012 claimed 26 lives.

The incident comes nearly five years after the devastating 2010 BP incident in the Gulf of Mexico – the largest accidental marine oil spill in the history of the petroleum industry.