Two dead in France factory explosion  2/17/2018 3:50:00 PM 
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Dieppe, France | Sat, February 17, 2018 | 10:50 pm
Two dead in France factory explosion Firefighters work at the site of an explosion at the Saipol factory in Dieppe on February 17, 2018, which left one person dead and another missing. One technician died and another is missing after an explosion occurred in one of the large tanks of the Saipol oil production plant during a maintenance operation in Dieppe, according to French MP Sebastien Jumel. (AFP/CHARLY TRIBALLEAU )

Two maintenance workers were killed when an explosion followed by a fire ripped through a vegetable oil refinery in the French coastal city of Dieppe on Saturday.

The cause of the blast in one of the oil tanks is not yet known, according to the local prefecture and the company that runs the plant, but a police investigation has been launched.

A team of 40 firefighters, police and rescuers were at the site of the Saipol factory, where the explosion unleashed huge flames and a large column of smoke.

Two bodies were found at the scene and about 11 people were lightly injured, mostly suffering shock, Dieppe local official Jehan-Eric Vinclair said.

Avril, the company that owns the factory, is France's leading manufacturer of vegetable oils which are used in food products and for biofuels and other industrial products.

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