CBS Detroit reports
that the blast occurred at the Marathon Detroit Refinery on South Fort Street. A thick cloud of black smoke rose into the clear afternoon sky and was visible for miles around
An evacuation order is in effect for parts of the neighboring suburb of Melvindale.
It is not currently known what caused the explosion or if anyone was hurt in the blast or resulting fire. Detroit Senior Fire Chief Carl Smith is at the site of the incident and is expected to release details when they become available.
The Detroit Free Press
reports that the fire is located in one of the refinery's smaller tanks.
Each day, the Marathon Detroit Refinery processes
more than 100,000 barrels of heavy crude oil from Canadian tar sands. In June 2010, the Free Press reported
that the refinery is located in Michigan's most heavily polluted zip code.
This is a breaking story. Digital Journal will publish updates as more information becomes available.
UPDATE 8:37 PM:
Melvindale police have issued the 'all clear' signal to residents, allowing them to return to their homes, CBS Detroit reports
. A spokesman for Marathon Petroleum also told reporters that no injuries resulted from the incident.