Explosion starts fire at Petro-Canada refinery near Mississauga, Ont.

MISSISSAUGA, Ont. (CP) - A massive explosion shook neighbouring homes and set off a fire at a Petro-Canada facility Thursday night in this city west of Toronto.

A spokesman for Mississauga Fire and Emergency said the blaze was brought under control by 9:30 p.m. after Peel regional police and 10 fire trucks were dispatched to the scene some 45 minutes earlier. There was no immediate word on the cause of the explosion, but emergency officials said there were no reports of injuries.

Area residents kilometres away said the force of the blast shook their homes.

Flames and smoke were seen spewing from the Petro-Canada Lubricants facility as firefighters battled the blaze.

The facility, located on the shores of Lake Ontario, produces 1.3 million litres of lubricants daily and employs 420 people.

The Canadian Press, 2003

08/21/2003 22:36 EST

TORONTO (Reuters) - An explosion and fire broke out at one of Petro-Canada's refineries west of Toronto late Thursday night, the company said.

Witnesses said it felt like an earthquake, as the blast shook the nearby community.

The fire at the Mississauga refinery started in the hydro treatment unit and was brought under control within half an hour, a company spokesman said.

"Everybody is safe and the rest of the plant is still functioning," said Steven Keith, Petro-Canada's spokesman.

The extent of any damage was not known.

"We don't know what caused (the fire) and don't have an estimate of the damage at this time," Keith said, noting that the short and long-term implications would depend on an investigation.

The plant is one of four Petro-Canada refineries across the country. It employs about 450 people and produces about 700 million liters of high-grade lubricants a year.

08/22/03 00:35 ET