Ghana’s Tema Oil Refinery, the only refinery in the country, has shut down after an explosion at a newly installed $6.21m crude oil heating unit, Reuters reported.
The explosion at the Crude Distillation Unit (CDU) was said to have occurred during a restarting process after the unit went off automatically during production, African News informed.
The refinery located in eastern port city of Tema returned to improved production after a previous four-year shutdown of one of the furnaces in the CDU. The furnace was installed and commissioned in December 2016 with the aim of expanding production at the country’s only refiner.
The plant will restart after reconfiguration through a second furnace, but output is likely to drop to 30,000b/d, which has for decades been below its capacity of 45,000b/d.
The state-owned refinery has been dogged by underinvestment, lack of maintenance, and debt, which has caused it to perform below capacity.