Thursday, December 29, 2011

Fire crews contain blaze on nuclear submarine in northern Russia

A fire onboard a strategic nuclear submarine has been brought under control by emergency workers. The blaze started when a fire broke out in a dockyard in northern Russia. Eleven fire crews, a helicopter and a boat managed to put the fire out.

Authorities say that the wooden scaffold around the submarine caught fire, which then spread to the outer skin of the vessel. However they have ruled out the possibility of the fire getting inside the submarine.

Russia’s Emergency Ministry confirmed that the scaffold caught fire as a result of procedural violations during repair works. They also say that radiation levels are normal at the moment and there is no threat of radioactive contamination in the area.

“Ahead of putting the submarine in for scheduled repairs, the reactor was shut down, and right now is in a secure condition,” a spokesperson for Russia’s Ministry of Defense said.

No casualties have been reported. A crew of military prosecutors is working at the scene investigating the cause of the fire.

The nuclear submarine “Yekaterinburg,” built in 1984, was undergoing repairs at a dock in Murmansk Region and was raised from the water in a dry dock at the moment that the fire broke out.



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