Fifteen people have been killed in an explosion and fire at a Russian explosives factory, about 270 kilometers southeast of Moscow on Friday.
The incident happened in western Russia's Ryazan province, according to the TASS news agency. The authorities of the Ryazan region, informed "15 people died and one person has serious burns" and is in critical situation while also adding that one more person is missing.
"Seventeen people were injured, of them seven died, one has been hospitalized and the fate of nine people remains unknown," the Emergencies Ministry said in a previous statement.
The ministry published images showing smoke and debris at the severely damaged factory building, reported AFP. Various images and videos circulating on Russian social media, showed rows of fire vehicles with flaming debris in a forested area near the plant in the town of Lesnoye.
It is believed that the fire might have started due to "violations of technological procedures and safety precautions" at the PGUP Elastic facility in the Ryazan area.
A failure to observe proper technical process caused the accident, according to a source cited by TASS.
Rescuers have been dispatched to the region. At least 170 emergency workers and 50 vehicles are dealing with the fire, reported The Associated Press.
The plant's website describes that it produces industrial explosives for civilian use, as well as ammunition for the defense industry and gas generators for submarines. However, the local media said it went bankrupt in 2015 and that its workshops were used by other companies of the explosives sector, according to AFP.
Similar Events in the Past
Russia has witnessed frequent accidental and deadly explosions or fires in recent years. The dilapidated infrastructure, or the failure to comply with safety standards has created several difficulties for the local residents.
Eleven people lost their lives in a fire inside a retirement home in the Urals region in December 2020.
In 2018, a total of 64 people, many of them children, died in a fire that ravaged a busy shopping mall in an industrial city in Siberia. Later, it was revealed that alarm systems and emergency exits of the shopping center were inoperable. It was the deadliest blaze in Russia in recent years.