Massive explosions at a Russian military ammunition depot in Siberia injured at least eight people and prompted the evacuation of thousands.
Massive explosions at a Russian military ammunition depot in Siberia injured at least eight people and prompted the evacuation of thousands Monday.
All personnel have been evacuated from the scene, and local residents within 20 kilometers of the base are being evacuated “to ensure the security of the population of the settlements located near the depots,” the main directorate of the Russian Emergencies Ministry for the Krasnoyarsk region said.
Air traffic was suspended within 30 kilometers (18.6 miles) of the munitions site. Videos posted by local residents showed powerful explosions sending plumes of black smoke high into the sky.
— Joseph Dempsey (@JosephHDempsey) August 5, 2019
The exact cause of the fire is unclear, but there are a number of forest fires raging across Siberia at present amid an unprecedented heatwave. This means that major firefighting resources are already spread thin in the region.
Ammunition-depot explosions are not uncommon in Russia or former Soviet territories. An explosion at an ammunition storage site, one home to about 13 million shells, in Chapaevsk in Russia’s Samara region in 2013 injured about 30 people.