Nexen Energy announces 350 layoffs after deciding not to restart an oilsands project that was the site of a fatal explosion

The company is letting 350 employees go after shelving plans to restart a facility at the Long  Lake  oilsands site after an explosion in January of this year killed two people.

Long Lake is a project located 40 kilometres southeast of Fort McMurray.

After a review, Nexen concluded a short-term repair for the upgrader is not feasible and is putting it into winter preservation mode with no date set for a restart.

Nexen says the explosion was the result of work being performed outside the scope of approved work activities.

The company has also finished an investigation into a pipeline leak last year that spilled about five million litres of bitumen, sand and produced water over a 16,000-square metre area.

The rupture happened on June 11, 2015.

Nexen says  it happened  about a month before it was discovered by a contractor and was a result of an incompatible pipeline design for the muskeg ground conditions.