Massive Explosion at a Gas Station in Russia’s Dagestan Kills 35 and Injures Scores More

The Associated Press
By The Associated Press
August 15, 2023Europe
Massive Explosion at a Gas Station in Russia’s Dagestan Kills 35 and Injures Scores More
The firefighters work to extinguish a fire at a petrol station on a road near Makhachkala, the capital of Dagestan, Russia, on Aug. 14, 2023. (Ministry of Emergency Situations press service via AP)

MOSCOW—A massive explosion at a gas station in Russia’s southern republic of Dagestan killed 35 people and injured scores more, Russian officials said Tuesday.

Russia’s Health Ministry said 115 people were injured in the blast and subsequent fire, and 35 of them died, including three children.

A total of 65 of those injured, including 16 children, remained hospitalized as of midday Tuesday, the ministry said. Eleven people, including two children, were in grave condition.

The explosion occurred Monday night on the outskirts of Makhachkala, the region’s capital. A fire started at a car repair shop and spread to a nearby gas station, triggering the blast.

Families of the dead will receive 1 million rubles (about $10,000) each and the injured between 200,000 and 400,000 rubles (about $2,000-$4,000), Dagestan’s authorities said. Russian state media said some of those injured would be airlifted to Moscow for treatment. Makhachkala is about 1,600 kilometers (990 miles) south of Moscow.

The authorities have begun a criminal investigation. Tuesday has been declared a day of mourning in Dagestan.

Also on Monday night, a blast in western Siberia killed two people and wounded five others. The explosion occurred at an oil mine in the Khanty-Mansiysk region late in the evening, authorities said.

The explosion in Dagestan was the deadliest in Russia since April 2022, when a fire at a defense research facility in Tver, a city 160 kilometers (100 miles) north of Moscow, killed 22 people and injured a dozen more.

A blast at a factory north of Moscow that makes optical equipment for Russia’s security forces killed one person and injured 84 more earlier this month.

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