06-19-2013, 10:00 AM #1
RU - Thousands flee, 1500 firefighters deployed as explosions rock Volga bomb depot
Russia blast: Multiple explosions rock arsenal storing ‘millions’ of shells.(rt.com)
Huge explosions have ripped through a munitions depot in Russia’s Samara Region where up to 13 million shells were stored. More than 1,500 firefighters were deployed to combat the blaze, which killed one person and forced thousands to flee.
Explosions at the landfill site are continuing, although fires in the surrounding areas have been eliminated.
Local authorities declared a state of emergency after artillery shells began exploding at an ammunition depot about 15 kilometers from the city of Chapaevsk. The first blast was heard at around 15:00 GMT on Tuesday, with further detonations rocking the area through the night.
Firefighters initially had difficulty reaching the blaze, as shell shards were scattering around the area. The depot housed some 13 million shells of various calibers at the time the explosions began.
Ammunition depot explosions are not a rare occurrence in the Russian Federation. Over the last three years, more than a dozen incidents have shocked the nation taking the lives of both civilians and military personnel.
The tragic highlights include July 2010 in the Altai region where six people died from explosions, including four civilians. In April 2011, an explosion at a military warehouse claimed the lives of four civilians employed by the Defense Ministry. In the Udmurtia region, a blast in June 2011 killed seven soldiers and wounded more than 100 people.
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