Authorities in Bahrain say they are investigating an oil pipeline explosion and fire in the island kingdom that sent flames shooting into the night sky.

Bahrain's Interior Ministry says the blast and fire hit near the village of Buri late Friday. It says in a statement those living nearby were evacuated and a cause of the blast was under investigation.

It identified the pipeline as being run by the state-run Bahrain Petroleum Co. The oil firm could not be immediately reached for comment.

The explosion comes as Bahrain faces occasional attacks from local Shiite militant groups as the kingdom's Sunni-ruled government continues a crackdown on all dissent, imprisoning or forcing politicians and activists into exile.

Bahrain is home to the U.S. Navy's 5th Fleet.