The fire that broke out in a military train carrying ammunition 100 kilometers from Novosibirsk on Wednesday morning has been contained. "The fire completely destroyed one car and caused minor damage to five other cars," the spokesperson for the Russia's Defense Ministry said.
No one was injured when the train caught fire. "The train was stopped in an unpopulated place and the personnel were evacuated to safety," said Defense Ministry spokesman Col. Igor Konashenkov. "Ten carloads of ammunition were destroyed in the fire."
However, heavy smoke remains in the area around the scene of a military train fire in the Novosibirsk Region, the grass near the rail tracks has caught fire, according to local authorities.
A commission of experts of the Central Military District, led by Commander, Col. Gen. Valery Gerasimov, has flown out to the scene to investigate the reasons of the explosion.
The motorized infantry formation, based in the Novosibirsk Region, has dispatched four mine-sweeping groups and two field engineering vehicles to the place, where the train went ablaze.
After the accident took place Russian Railways (RZD) has suspended railway services along the Trans-Siberian Railway, the company has announced.
Trains will be switched to bypass tracks in order to guarantees passengers' safety and to minimize time losses, it said.
Russian Railways has set up an emergency center, led by the company's vice president, Anatoly Krasnoshchok. A commission of experts, led by the compnay's vice president, Alexander Tishanin, and another commission of the Western Siberian Railways, led by the railway's chief Alexander Tselko, have traveled to the scene.
The fire may have resulted from a malfunction in the braking system in one of the railway cars, according to Russia's Defence Ministry.
Yet the Russian Railways company has rejected the Defense Ministry's claims that the fire that broke out in a train carrying ammunition in the Novosibirsk region, was due to defects in the braking system. "Railway cars with brakes not in working order cannot be cleared to travel. The cause citied - unfit brakes - is unfounded," a Russian Railways spokesman said. The cause of the fire can only be named after the aftermath is cleared and the incident has been investigated, he added.
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