A major fire that destroyed part of the Stavrolen petrochemicals complex of Russia's Lukoil oil group in December 2011 is estimated to have caused damage to the tune of over ?20.5 mln. The accident was caused by a gas leak in the "assembly for separation of the propane-propylene fraction" resulting from corrosion and "structural changes" that occurred while the equipment was in use, according to an official technical inquiry. 9 workers were injured in the blaze broke out on 15 December in a gas separation unit of the site's ethylene production plant halting production of high density polyethylene and polypropylene. The plant has capacity to produce 300,000 tpa of HDPE and 120,000 tpa of PP. Lukoil is looking at restart of PP production at Stavrolen by the end of February, if it can secure propylene supplies. However, based on the manufacture and supply time for new equipment, polyethylene output may not resume until 1 April. Lukoil has emphasized that the recovery operations will not interfere with progress on the group's longer term project to build a gas chemical facility at Stavrolen.