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    THREAT OF ENVIRONMENTAL CATASTROPHE IN THE AREA OF MI-8 CRASH REMOVED

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    PETROPAVLOVSK-KAMCHATSKY, March 4 (RIA Novosti) - A threat of environmental catastrophe on the Kamchatka peninsula in the area of the Mi-8 helicopter's crash which resulted in the fuel spill on the ice of Lake Kalygir has been removed, Vladimir Belomestov, chief expert of the environmental protection service of the Nature Protection Ministry's regional directorate, reported on Thursday.

    According to him, only two out of six samples of water taken in the area of the fuel spill contained pernicious admixtures whose concentration topped the natural background by 15-45% .

    The results obtained allow to speak about the stabilization of the ecological situation in the area of Lake Kalygir. As ice melts, the samples of water will be taken once again to monitor the state of water in the lake, Mr. Belomestov said.

    Lake Bolshoi Kalygir is a first category fishery area, the place of spawning of humpback salmon, red salmon and king salmon. According to preliminary data, the damage inflicted on the nature of the peninsula from the fuel spill reaches 1.5 million rubles (over $50,000).

    The MI-8 helicopter made an emergency landing on the ice of Lake Kalygir on January 22. The helicopter's body and fuel tanks were damaged to a great extent. People on board the helicopter got wounds and bruises.

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