UFA, May 27 (RIA Novosti) - A soldier is facing criminal charges over a fire at an ammunition depot at a military base in the Russian Urals, investigators said on Friday.
The fire broke out on Thursday when 120-mm artillery shells exploded in the loading area of the depot some 50 kilometers (30 miles) from the republic of Bashkortοstan's capital of Ufa.
About 2,500 people were evacuated from the village of Urman over the threat posed by exploding shells that scattered around the area, injuring at least eight people and setting fire to houses and trees. More than 50 buildings, including 14 residential houses, were destroyed or damaged as a result.
Private Sergei Denyayev has been charged with "a violation of weapon handling rules," the Russian Investigative Committee said in a statement published on its website on Friday.
Denyayev, together with other soldiers, was involved in repackaging shells at the depot, the statement said.
"In violation of security rules, he threw a shell with a detonator in with other repackaged shells, which resulted in a detonation and the explosion of the shells," the statement reads.
Local officials said on Friday the damaged caused by the fire may exceed 100,000 rubles ($3.5 million).
On Thursday, Rustem Khamitov, the head of Bashkortοstan, ordered the construction of new houses for people left homeless as a result of the fire.
Ammunition depot fire injures eight
Published: 27 May, 2011, 05:25
Edited: 27 May, 2011, 07:38
In Russia’s Bashkiria Republic, a fire destroyed an artillery ammunition dump and caused the destruction of over 40 houses in a nearby town.
The injured were hospitalized, but only one of them in moderately serious condition. Most of the injured received minor burns while extinguishing the fire.
Local authorities had to evacuate approximately 6,000 citizens because the ammunition at the burning depot – consisting of 120-millimiter cannon shells, among other weaponry – started to detonate in the fire, spraying fragments at a distance of up to two kilometers.
A Be-200 amphibious aircraft and three robots designed to deal with industrial fires belonging to Russia’s Emergency Ministry (Emercom) are participating in the firefighting operation, which might last through the end of the weekend.
The fire started on the esplanade of the 99th Arsenal, where outdated ammunition was being prepared for recycling. The arsenal is situated near Urman township, about 100 kilometers from Bashkiria’s capital Ufa.
The police officer responsible was reversing the vehicle when he knocked over the pensioner on Thursday afternoon. The old woman died on the scene.
Russia's police forces have come under criticism in recent years for a string of high-profile scandals involving drunken shooting sprees, rampant corruption and beatings of detainees.
President Dmitry Medvedev launched a police reform in February in a bid to restore the soured image of Russia's law enforces which, among other things, renamed the Russian law enforcement agency from the traditional "militia" to the more Western-sounding title of "police".
MOSCOW, May 27 (RIA Novosti)
09:51 27/05/2011ALL NEWS
11 people reported killed in bus-truck collision in Moscow region.
27/5 Tass 94
MOSCOW, May 27 (Itar-Tass) —— The traffic police in the Moscow Region opened a hotline for the relatives of people killed or injured in a road accident in the Stupino district. According to the preliminary reports, a bus, which was en route from Tambov to Moscow, collided with a truck killing 11 people and another four people were hospitalized.
“The lists of people, who were inside the bus at the moment of the crash, are being made up. Calling the hotline one can learn about those killed and the medical institutions, where injured people were brought,” a source said.
The driver of the bus, which got in the road accident in the Moscow Region, most likely fell asleep behind the wheel, a source in the traffic police in the Moscow Region said.
“The traffic conditions at the road accident site are normal,” he noted. “The illumination is on, the road marking is clear, the road is straight and the road surface is dry,” he said. “A team of investigators was formed to investigate the road accident, but we preliminarily assume that the driver just fell asleep behind the wheel,” the source said.
Meanwhile, the press service of the Moscow regional traffic police noted that the road accident occurred at about 3.50 a.m. Moscow time at the 104th kilometre of the Don highway (Stupino district). “The Neoplan-116 bus, which was en route from Tambov to Moscow, rammed into a leading KAMAZ truck with the Dagestani numbers for an unclear reason. Some 21 passengers were inside the bus at the moment of the road accident,” the press service said.
From a strong hit the front part of the bus caught fire. “Eleven people died, four were hospitalized and another nine people received the medical aid at the accident site,” the source said.
The road accident site is fenced off, a team of detectives is working at the accident site.
Prime Minister Vladimir Putin vowed to ease the social tax burden for companies and promised that the country's per capita GDP would double from the current $19,700 within a decade
Three people died and dozens were injured when riot police dispersed a protest rally near the Georgian parliament building in Tbilisi on Thursday. President Mikheil Saakashvili said the opposition was guided by a "scenario written outside of Georgia"
(Kommersant, Vedomosti, Moskovskiye Novosti)
Just months before Russian parliamentary elections, Russians say they know almost nothing about the liberal Right Cause party, which is touted by the ruling United Russia party as one of its main opponents
ECONOMY & BUSINESS
The Federal Anti-Monopoly Service could start proceedings against the administration of Moscow's Vnukovo Airport for supporting a limited number of taxi companies who overcharge passengers
Central Bank head Sergei Ignatyev estimated Russia's net foreign capital outflow in the first quarter of 2011 at $30 billion
The total cost of an ambitious project to establish a tourist base in Russia's volatile North Caucasus region could reach 1 trillion rubles ($35.5 billion)
Czech car dealer AAA Auto Group will re-launch trade in the Moscow Region in August-September. The group's previous attempt at business in Russia was stifled by the 2008 financial crisis
Russian bank profits this year could exceed 900 billion rubles ($31.9 billion), the Central Bank said.
OIL & GAS
Russian-British joint venture TNK-BP has become the only Russian company to file a bid to take part in the privatization of Poland's Lotos oil concern
Oil company Lukoil will pay $1.8 billion for new, and undisclosed, production assets abroad
The Investigative Committee and Public Chamber are wrapping up legislation that would oblige authorities to pay compensation to crime victims
An influential Islamic organization with offices across the country has been forced to close, highlighting a political struggle over the country's millions-strong Muslim population
Whistleblowing blogger Alexei Navalny has sued the Investigation Committee for failing to officially notify him of its decision to reopen a fraud case against him
Russia's Prosecutor General's office announced a campaign to reclassify the key prosecutors in the Moscow Region following a recent scandal involving corrupt officials
New motor vehicle inspection regulations, that postpone checks on certain cars for 12 months and cancel them for new cars, will come into force on June 4
Popular Internet phone service Skype crashed on Thursday just two weeks after Microsoft bought the company for $8.5 billion