Building crumbles in Russia, no one injured: officials

1st September 2010, Comments 0 comments

An eight-storey building under renovation crumbled Wednesday in Russia's second city of Saint Petersburg but no one was hurt as a result of the accident, officials said.

The Interfax news agency quoted a woman who managed to escape from the building as saying that only three people had been inside at the time of the accident.

"There were three people in the building, we all got out. There was no one there except us," the woman was quoted as saying.

The news agency cited another emergencies ministry spokeswoman, Irina Andrianova, as saying no one was hurt as a result of the accident.

Officials had earlier said people were feared trapped in the ruins.

"An eight-storey building crumbled," emergencies ministry spokeswoman Tatyana Skrigonyuk told AFP, noting that office premises could have been located on the ground floor.

Emergency workers were searching through the rubble of the building located in the centre of the city, she added.

Russian news reports said the non-residential building's outer walls remained intact and only the internal structures had collapsed.

Many of Russia's infrastructure facilities and buildings date back to the Soviet era and such accidents are not uncommon.

Last month a breakdown at an electricity substation triggered a massive power cut in Saint Petersburg, leaving almost half of the former imperial capital without power for several hours, its worst urban blackout in half a decade.

© 2010 AFP

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