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Russian fire: Witnesses say there were no alarms or sprinklers

Russian fire: Witnesses say there were no alarms or sprinklers
By Euronews
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At least 64 people are said to have died when a blaze ripped through a shopping mall


More details are emerging about the fire that ripped through a shopping mall in the Russian city of Kemerovo leaving at least 64 people dead.

Witnesses say there were no fire alarms, sprinklers or loudspeaker messages and people were left to find their own way out of the mall which was packed with children and their parents on the first weekend of the school vacation.

Firefighters were still recovering bodies as parts of the buildings were still smoldering.

Some of the dead were reportedly found inside a cinema.

Vladimir Puchkov, Minister of Emergency Situations, says the search and research operation is continuing.

"There is a group of forces working at 6 spots right now," he explains. "We looked through all five floors of the trading center. We continue to clear out debris on the third floor and we are preparing measures for clearing all the premises from any remaining equipment and furniture, and parts where contruction beams have collapsed. We are clearing out an obstructions."

More than 600 emergency personnel have been deployed to the Winter Cherry complex in Kemerovo, about 3,600 km east of Moscow.

The fire started in one of the cinemas on the fourth and fifth floors and rapidly spread throughout the building.

Fire teams took more than six hours to bring the fire under control after flames affected an area of 1,500 square metres.

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