1 Apr 2022 10:02

Eight reservoirs ablaze at Belgorod oil depot - Russian emergencies ministry

MOSCOW. April 1 (Interfax) - Eight reservoirs are burning at the oil depot in the city of Belgorod, the press service for the Russian Emergency Situations Ministry told Interfax.

"The latest updates indicate that eight reservoirs are ablaze. A foam attack is being carried out," the press service said.

A total of 194 rescuers and 59 pieces of equipment are battling the fire. A firefighting train is also being used.

Belgorod Region Governor Vyacheslav Gladkov said on social media earlier that a fire broke out at an oil depot in Russia's Belgorod following an airstrike.

"The fire erupted at the oil depot as a result of an airstrike delivered by two helicopters of the Ukrainian Armed Forces. They entered Russian airspace, flying at a low altitude. There are no casualties," Gladkov said.

All resources necessary to extinguish the blaze are available, the governor said.

"The Emergency Situations Ministry is trying to contain the fire as promptly as possible. There is no threat to the population," Gladkov said.

Residents evacuated from three streets near the oil depot are temporarily staying at the Belgorod Arena sports center. They will be able to return home after the fire has been put out, Gladkov said.

The buses being used to transport people have been taken from the city's reserve, Belgorod Mayor Anton Ivanov said.

"There should be no disruptions to the operations of public transport," Ivanov said.

According to Ivanov, no one has been injured in the fire.

"The latest information available indicates that two oil depot employees, who were there at the time of the explosion, were not hurt," Ivanov said on Telegram.

The Rosneft press service said in connection with the fire at the oil depot in Belgorod that all staff have been evacuated from the facility. There are no fatalities and injuries.

"PJSC Oil Company Rosneft's deputy chief executive director has left for the site. Coordination with the Emergency Situations Ministry and law enforcement agencies is ongoing," the company said.

Meanwhile, the press service for the Russian Emergency Situations Ministry told Interfax taht specialists from Russian consumer health watchdog Rospotrebnadzor have not detected any concentrations of hazardous substances above the maximum permissible limit in the area of an oil depot in Belgorod where a fire is burning.

"A Rospotrebnadzor laboratory measured the concentrations of hazardous substances in the air in residential areas. No concentrations of hazardous substances above the maximum permissible limit have been found," the press service said.         

Specialists at the oil depot are cooling the neighboring reservoirs using fire monitors.