Helicopters rescue workers from burning oil platform near UK

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The Independent Online

An oil platform north of Britain caught fire on Sunday, and helicopters were fighting strong winds to rescue the 159 workers aboard it, the Royal Air Force said.

At least 44 of the workers were quickly removed from the Thistle Alpha platform in the North Sea, and seven rescue helicopters were trying to save the others, the RAF said.

No injuries were immediately reported in the blaze, which began at about 8:30 a.m. (0830 GMT) on a platform located about 190 kilometers (120 miles) northwest of the Shetland Islands, the RAF said.

It said the cause of the fire, which was sending smoke and flames out from the platform in the open sea, was not immediately known.