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Smoke rises from the Zagorsk Optical and Mechanical Plant in the city of Sergiev Posad, Moscow. Administration of Sergiev Posad Telegram Channel/AP

The number of people injured in an explosion at an industrial plant northeast of Moscow has increased to at least 45, the administration of the Sergiev Posad city district said on Telegram. Six of the injured are in intensive care, the post said.

Emergency services said the blast appeared to have occurred in a warehouse containing pyrotechnic equipment, the state news agency TASS reported.

Russia’s Investigative Committee has opened a criminal investigation into the incident. 

“In the urban district of Sergiev Posad, a criminal case has been opened on the fact of an incident at one of the factories, as a result of which people were injured,” the investigative committee said.

A representative from the Investigative Committee told TASS news agency that suggestions of an unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) attack on the plant have not been confirmed. The true cause of an explosion is being determined by authorities, they said.

“As for the explosion, it was very powerful. And now the operational services are engaged, investigating. I cannot comment on what it was, because journalists traditionally ask the question: was it a blow from above or an explosion inside — this is done by specialists,” the governor of the Moscow region, Andrei Vorobyov, told RIA Novosti in an interview.

“One thing is clear, that the explosion was powerful, and it was in the pyrotechnics workshop,” he added.

Earlier Wednesday, Russian state news agency RIA Novosti, citing local authorities, reported that the source of the detonation in the explosion at the industrial plant was a pyrotechnics warehouse rented by a third company on the site of the plant. The cause of the explosion is a violation of technological processes, they added. 

The explosion occurred at Zagorsk Optical and Mechanical Plant in the area of ​​the boiler room, Russian state news agency TASS reported, citing local emergency services.

The plant is a developer and manufacturer for optical and optoelectronic devices for the military, law enforcement agencies, industry and healthcare.


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