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Fire injures four, shuts CVR Refining's Kansas refinery

(Reuters) - Four employees were hurt in a fire at CVR Refining's 115,000-barrel-per-day refinery in Coffeyville, Kansas, after a fire broke out at an isomerization unit early on Tuesday, the company said in a statement.

The refinery was shut down after the fire, CVR said, adding that the injured employees were taken to the hospital.

"Reports indicate CVR employees were working on a pump when it caught fire with flames engulfing the area," said a statement prepared by the Coffeyville Fire Department and placed on the city's Facebook page.

The city's statement said there was no explosion reported and that all of the employees' injuries were burn-related. The fire department responded to assist with the injuries, the city said.

CVR said company officials were assessing the situation. Its statement did not specify a cause of the fire or how long the refinery's production would be affected.

The company said initial reports indicated there was no impact to the surrounding community.

The fire began just after midnight and was extinguished at about 1:18 a.m. CDT (0618 GMT), CVR said.

In the city's statement, Fire Chief James Grimmett said firefighters had remained on the scene until 2:30 a.m. to provide backup for CVR's emergency response team.

At the Group Three trading hub for the region nearest the refinery, gasoline had been about 3 cents stronger at 19.00 cents and then 18.75 cents under the benchmark August RBOB gasoline futures traded on the New York Mercantile Exchange, according to brokers.

"It has since backed off," said a broker.

The Kansas refinery produces mainly clean-transportation products such as gasoline, diesel fuels and propane. An isomerization unit helps produce isobutane and higher-octane gasoline.

A small fire was reported on a gasoline-making fluid catalytic cracking unit at the Coffeyville refinery on Dec. 28, 2010, forcing the company to reduce crude throughput to just over 50,000 barrels per day.

The refinery is about 100 miles from the large crude oil trading and storage hub in Cushing, Oklahoma, delivery point for the U.S. light sweet crude contract traded on the NYMEX. Numerous pipelines, including some from the U.S. Gulf Coast and Canada, serve the facility, according to CVR's website.

Crude oil traders on Tuesday said the Coffeyville refinery ran a lot of Cushing crude, so prices in the domestic cash market were likely to be pressured.

CVR Refining LP, headquartered in Sugar Land, Texas, is an independent downstream energy limited partnership formed by CVR Energy Inc.

(Reporting by Robert Gibbons and Catherine Ngai in New York and by Koustav Samanta and Debasis Mohapatra in Bangalore; Editing by Lisa Von Ahn and Bernadette Baum)

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