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    Rescuers narrow down search for last missing hydro plant workers

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    With 69 bodies found since last week's disaster at a Siberian hydropower plant, rescuers have narrowed down the search for the remaining six missing workers, an official said

    MOSCOW, August 23 (RIA Novosti) - With 69 bodies found since last week's disaster at a Siberian hydropower plant, rescuers have narrowed down the search for the remaining six missing workers, an official said on Sunday.

    A turbine hall flooded during repair work to a generator last Monday at the Sayano-Shushenskaya plant on the Yenisei River south Siberia, Russia's largest hydropower station.

    Pavel Plat, the Russian emergencies ministry's chief military expert, told Vesti TV: "We have found the bodies of 69 people, and the fate of another six remains unknown. Going by information received from workers at the station and eyewitnesses, we have begun a specific search for them, and can now with full confidence say that these people are in the area of the seventh or eighth power units."

    Rescuers have been working continually for the past six days to pump water out of the vast engine room at the plant.

    RusHydro, the owner of the station built in 1978, has come under pressure from relatives of the victims for failure to replace ageing equipment, and putting profits ahead of safety.

    A funeral service was held on Sunday morning in the nearby village of Cheryomushki for 22 of those killed.

    Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin visited the dam on Friday to inspect the damage and the cleanup operation, and demanded that the Energy Ministry and RusHydro draw up a reconstruction plan within six weeks.

     

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