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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

Decommissioned Submarine Blast Kills One

An explosion in a decommissioned nuclear submarine being cut up for scrap metal at a northern shipyard killed at least one person and seriously injured another, an emergency official said Monday.

The blast at the Zvyozdochka plant on the White Sea took place at around 8:32 a.m. on board a submarine that had already been stripped of its nuclear fuel and reactors, said Igor Grigoryev, a spokesman for the Emergency Situations Ministry in Arkhangelsk region.

Officials at the Defense Ministry and the Federal Atomic Energy Agency said they had no information on the incident.

Oleg Frolov, chief engineer for the shipyard, said in comments broadcast on NTV television that there was no danger of radiation contamination from the incident.

News reports said the submarine was a Victor-class ship that normally had two reactors on board.

Grigoryev said a welding torch apparently ignited fuel vapors that had built up in one compartment of the submarine. One of the workers was killed and another was hospitalized in intensive care, he said.

The fire was extinguished around 9 a.m., he said.