2 dead in Russian aircraft carrier fire

The blaze burned about 500 square meters of the aircraft carrier. File Photo courtesy U.S. Department of Defense

Dec. 14 (UPI) — Firefighters extinguished a fire aboard Russia’s only aircraft carrier Friday and officials confirmed two people died in the blaze.

The fire broke out Thursday morning in the first power unit on the eighth deck of the Admiral Kuznetsov. The aircraft carrier was docked in Murmansk, near Russia’s northwestern border with Finland.

Crews were doing repair work on the ship when they first spotted smoke on the upper deck.

The fire burned for nearly 24 hours.

“At around 5 a.m. the fire was extinguished. The fire covered 500 square meters,” an emergency services source told Russia’s state-run Tass news agency.

Two people died and 14 were injured, one in serious condition. Radio Free Europe said one of the bodies was found on the second deck after a search-and-rescue operation.

The Kuznetsov has been at sea since the mid-1980s, but has spent a significant amount of time undergoing repairs.


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