SARATOV, June 20 (RIA Novosti) – Ammunition blasts continued Thursday at a central Russian military facility where a large fire erupted days earlier amid multiple explosions that tore through the site and sent shrapnel flying over a kilometer.
As massive amounts of water were dumped from the air onto the blaze, unexploded artillery shells began detonating, the Interior Ministry said in a statement.
Some 6,500 residents, including 800 children, have been evacuated from the surrounding community, near the city of Chapayevsk in Russia’s Samara region. Thirty-four people have been injured, with at least one person reported dead.
The Interior Ministry added that police were continuing to control the area, enforcing order and providing assistance to residents.
President Vladimir Putin on Wednesday ordered that affected locals be paid 10,000 rubles ($330) for “emergency needs.”
A regional official told RIA Novosti on Wednesday, a day after the fire began, that there were more than 3,000 unexploded shells at the military testing ground, and the blaze could endure another several days.