Tuesday, 18 September, 2018

Rescuer shares terrifying details of the operation at burning shopping mall

3 children 1 woman die in massive shopping mall blaze in Russia Fire in Kemerovo: Foreign Ministry checks if there are any Ukrainians among victims
| 30 March, 2018, 00:52

Wednesday was declared a day of mourning in Russian Federation, and thousands of people have been bringing flowers and stuffed toys to makeshift memorials across the country.

A fire broke out Sunday afternoon at the shopping mall in Kemerovo city in southwestern Siberia, killing 64 people, including many children.

The youngest victim according to an official list published by regional authorities was a two-year-old boy, while at least 19 of the 64 people who perished were under 10.

In the Kemerovo region, relatives were holding the first funerals for victims as regional emergencies minister Alexander Mamontov said 27 bodies have been identified.

Putin yesterday ordered similar shopping centres across Russian Federation to be inspected to make sure they were well prepared in the event of a fire.

Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov refused to comment yesterday on the regional authorities' actions, telling reporters that "Putin has said that it is hardly appropriate to issue hasty judgements".


Russian Federation has rigorous fire safety rules and a system of regular inspections, but these efforts are undermined by endemic corruption which affects many aspects of life in the country of 144 million people. A further 14 people remain in hospital.

Moscow reduced the number of inspections for certain businesses after complaints that inspectors were extorting bribes in exchange for turning a blind eye to violations.

Five people have been detained, and investigators say fire exits had been blocked and fire alarms were not working when the fire tore through the Winter Cherry mall's upper floors. As a result, many companies prefer to pay bribes instead of complying with outdated and excessive regulations, including fire safety rules.

Winter Cherry was one of Kemerovo's most popular entertainment centers for children, with its own indoor skating rink, petting zoo and trampolines.

Some chanted "Putin - resign!", ten days after Putin secured a comfortable election win for another six-year term in office.

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