Agency: Refinery fire caused by blast debris hitting tank

SUPERIOR, Wis. (AP) — A federal agency says a massive refinery fire that forced the temporary evacuation of homes in the coastal Wisconsin city of Superior in April was caused by an explosion that sent debris hurtling into an asphalt storage tank.

The U.S. Chemical Safety Board released an update Thursday on the explosion and fire at the Husky Energy refinery in Superior in late April.

According to the report, the explosion sent a piece of debris about 200 feet (61 meters) into an aboveground storage tank of asphalt. The tank was punctured and spilled hot asphalt, which ignited about two hours later.

The report says 36 people sought medical attention after the explosion, including 11 refinery and contract workers. A large part of Superior was evacuated.

Canada-based Husky Energy said in its second-quarter earnings statement last week that the refinery is not expected to restart until 2020.

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