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Russian house blast kills 39
Date: 2013/3/5   Visit: 3885


MOSCOW, March 17 (Xinhuanet) -- The death toll of an apartment building explosion in northern Russia early Tuesday rose to 39, including seven children, the Inter-Tass news agency reported Wednesday.
Rescuers pulled out six more bodies from the debris overnight, and the dead included 21 women, 11 men and seven children, the agency quoted officials of the northern city of Arkhangelsk as saying.

Hundreds of rescuers, helped by sniffer dogs, have been searching through the rubble around the clock since the blast early on Tuesday.
Rescuers have pulled 24 people alive from the rubble of the building, which officials said was almost certainly leveled by a gas leak.
But police were searching for two men suspected of involvement in the explosion.

Two middle aged men, thought to be homeless, removed gas valves carrying gas into the house, said Natalya Ozhigina, head of the regional Federal Security Service’s public relations department.

The blast erupted at 3:00 a.m. Moscow time (0000 GMT) when about 70 residents in the nine-storey building in Arkhangelsk, 960 kilometers north of Moscow, were sleeping.

Arkhangelsk prosecutors have opened a criminal investigation into the accident on charges of death and damage by negligence.

Neglect of safety precautions has led to frequent gas explosions in Russian apartment buildings and public facilities.
Moscow police are checking attics, basements and other housing facilities in case of gas system malfunctions. Enditem

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