A massive explosion at the Balongan oil refinery owned by the Pertamina company, an Indonesian state-owned oil and natural gas corporation, occurred in Indonesia's Indramayu area in West Java province on early Monday.
Four people, who were nearby when the blast occured, were injured in a fire that erupted after the explosion. They were hospitalized with burns, according to a statement issued by Pertamina.
The company said that the residents of neighboring districts were evacuated.
"It is estimated that currently there are around 200 residents who have been evacuated in the Pendopo of Indramayu Regency, around 400 people at the Indramayu Islamic Center and around 350 residents at the Bumi Patra Housing Sports Hall", the company said.
According to The Indonesia Antara news agency citing local emergency authorities, at least 20 people were injured in the fire, with five of them receiving serious burns.
The cause behind the massive blast remains unclear, although Pertamina outlined that "at the time of the incident, it was raining heavily, with lightning".
Corporate Secretary of Subholding Refining & Petrochemical, PT Kilang Pertamina Internasional, Ifki Sukarya, said that the road leading to the area of explosion has been blocked. The company also ensured "that the fuel supply to the public is not disrupted and is currently running normally."
Local media outlets, citing eyewitnesses, said the explosion was heard up to a radius of dozens of kilometers from the epicentre.
"Around 00.30 [local time] there was a very strong explosion. The residents' houses were shaking and some of them had broken glass", one witness told a local media outlet Teras Pendopo.
A video that captured the moment of the explosion emerged on social media.
JUST IN - Massive explosion at the Balongan oil refinery in Indonesiapic.twitter.com/zJ9zj61S7p— Disclose.tv 🚨 (@disclosetv) March 28, 2021
Multiple videos filmed on scene were also shared online, showing an enormous blast evolving into a fire.
Stay safe semua yang di deket lokasi kebakaran pertamina balongan indramayu pic.twitter.com/mnNCNtVYWO— Bang Binx (@bintangghf) March 28, 2021
Endonezya'nn en büyük petrol rafinerisi olan Pertamina Balongan rafinerisinde çok şiddetli bir patlama yaşandı.— theugre (@theugre) March 28, 2021
🔹Rafineri günde 125 bin varil ham petrol işleme kapasitesine sahip.
🔹Patlamanın nedeni henüz belli değil. pic.twitter.com/WIGpIgtghl
One Twitter user, who claims to live near the scene, shared a video filmed from her house. According to the user, her house "got a bit damage" due to the blast.
Other photos shared online allegedly show damage done to one resident's house, with window glass seen smashed on the floor.
Kondisi salah satu rumah warga saat terjadi ledakan kilang minyak Pertamina Balongan, Indramayu. Jalanan chaos dan langit masih memerah. pic.twitter.com/ozjCmVct3V— 𝙷𝚊𝚗𝚜 (@Eashfihan) March 28, 2021
Netizens also shared photos "from towns nearby" after the blast.
Evacuated residents were housed in several government-owned facilities. Twitter users shared some footage online, saying that the Indramayu Regency government has opened the Pendopo Indramayu for the evacuated people.
Korban terdampak terbakarnyaTanki minyak Pertamina RU VI Balongan mengungsi di Pendopo Pemkab Indramayu. pic.twitter.com/ohIuaCQ7eA— Om Ajie (@om_ajie) March 28, 2021
Saat ini PemKab Indramayu membuka Pendopo Indramayu sebagai tempat evakuasi masyarakat di daerah sekitar lokasi ledakan pertamina Balongan.— Kungmin is Kungmin (@namkoongmin_id) March 28, 2021
Untuk teman² yang sedang berada di tempat evakuasi, jangan lupa ikuti protokol kesehatan. Semoga disana baik² saja 🙏 pic.twitter.com/bTx2ZKAKam
No further details were immediately available.