Fire closes Equinor’s Hammerfest LNG export plant

Norwegian energy giant Equinor has shut down its Hammerfest LNG export plant following a fire in an oil-powered turbine at the facility.

Equinor said the incident occurred on Monday at about 15:30h local time with no injuries reported.

Images on local media showed smoke rising from the plant but Equnior said later in the day that the fire was put out with work ongoing to cool down the stricken area.

Furthermore, the Norwegian firm said it evacuated all non-emergency staff from the facility notifying relevant authorities on the incident.

It remains unclear when Equinor would bring back online the facility.

This incident occured just hours after Equinor restarted the facility following an outage and a gas leak.

The operator shut down the plant on September 11 and tried to bring it back online two days later but closed it again following a gas leak.

The Norwegian firm restarted the plant early on September 28 and it worked just for hours prior to the fire.

The closure of the terminal which liquefies natural gas from the Snohvit (Snow White) field in the Barents Sea reduced production by 18 million cubic metres per day.

Natural gas from Snohvit reaches Hammerfest LNG via a 160-kilometer gas pipeline which became operational in the autumn of 2007.

Hammerfest LNG is able to produce about 4.3 million tonnes per year of LNG.

The fuel produced at the facility mainly lands at LNG terminals in Europe but also in Asia.

Equinor is the operator of both the Snohvit field and Hammerfest LNG with a 36.8 percent stake.

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