Early on Sunday morning, oil refinery reservoirs in Birjand, Iran caught fire, causing thick smoke visible from several kilometers away, according to Islamic Republic state media. Firefighters have been dispatched to extinguish the fire at the mini-refinery, as per IRNA. Iranian officials ordered the evacuation of a nearby factory while firefighting forces continued to battle the flames. Mohammad Ali Akhundi, the director-general of Iran’s South Khorasan Province’s crisis management department, stated that “operational vehicles” were forced to work to extinguish the flames “from around the danger zone because it was a matter of life.” Akhundi confirmed that there are no residential buildings in the vicinity of the factory.
According to the director-general, Iranian firefighting forces are considering letting the fire engulf the reservoirs due to the severe dangers involved, to “save the lives of rescuers and people who are present in the region.” Rescue services from Iran’s Revolutionary Guards (IRGC) were present on the scene, he further confirmed.
This is a developing story.