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Explosion in Russia, after fire sets off explosives.

Image Credit: Screenshot from a video uploaded by The Guardian

On Wednesday, Russian authorities have evacuated more than 2000 people from ten villages after an explosion in a munitions depot in the region of Ryazan. The emergency ministry said that it evacuated people in a five-kilometre radius. It is believed that the explosives were set off by wildfire in the area. Highways in the vicinity were closed. Rounds were heard exploding every 5-10 seconds.

More than 400 firefighters were deployed to the area. Additional firefighters were sent in from Moscow, and equipment such as fire-fighting train were also used. The Defense Ministry said that 189 soldiers backed by three helicopters, four heavy firefighting planes, and drones were deployed to extinguish the fire. It took them till Wednesday evening to control the massive blaze in the depot. Authorities reported no deaths, but five were injured.

The fire started by wildfire in dry grass, where it eventually reached the explosives in the munitions depot. Soon after the explosion a large plume of black smoke was seen coming out from the depot. The depot was reportedly containing up to 75,000 tonnes of explosives in 100 storage facilities.

The regional governor, Nikolai Lyubimov said,

The worst is behind us, the situation is under control.

Regional Governor Nikolai Lyubimov

A criminal inquiry by the investigative committee has been opened to investigate any violation of rules on handling explosives.

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