RUSSIA’S only aircraft carrier has burst into flames in the latest mysterious fire to target key Russian infrastructure in recent months.
The Admiral Kuznetsov, a 305-metre-long Soviet-era warship, erupted in flames while in a Murmansk dock in the Arctic northwest of Russia.
2Russia’s only aircraft carrier has burst into flamesCredit: AFP or licensors2The Admiral Kuznetsov previously burst into flames in 2019Emergency services told Russian state media that 20 people had to be evacuated after the fire broke out at the Zvyozdochka shipyard in Severodvinsk, almost 1,000 miles north of Moscow.
Russian media reported that the fire spread to a six-metre area on the open deck, forcing the crew to rush and extinguish it.
The crew is currently checking other compartments onboard the ship to ensure it is safe.
Alexei Rakhmanov, the head of the United Shipbuilding Corporation, which is overseeing the renovation of the 1985-built aircraft carrier, told RIA Novosti the blaze began during repair work.
The cause of the fire is still unknown.
It comes just two days after the mammoth month-long operation to remove the Admiral Kuznetsov from dry dock in Murmansk began.
The overhaul isn’t expected to be finally completed until 2024.
Russian state media agency TASS quoted an emergency services source on Thursday as saying that the fire had been extinguished and that “there were no casualties”.
Previously, Putin’s vessel stalked British shores when it sailed through the English Channel on its way to the Syrian coast in 2016.
The Admiral Kuznetsov previously suffered a mysterious fire onboard in December 2019 during a refit.
Two people died and 14 were injured in the devastating blaze which also caused some $8m in damage.
That fire came just one year after the disaster-plagued warship was struck by a falling crane.
Russia’s biggest floating dry dock sank in October 2018, causing one of its 70-ton cranes to crash onto the ship’s flight deck.
The ship has been undergoing massive repairs since 2017 after it was deployed in Putin’s savage attacks on Syria.
It is the latest mysterious fire to break out in Russia affecting key infrastructure in recent months.
Earlier in December, a massive shopping centre near Moscow exploded in an enormous fire.
The Mega mall in Khimki, burst into flames following a suspected arson attack, leaving one dead.
Just this week, a Siberian oil pipeline exploded, killing three gas workers.
The alleged sabotage attack hit the major Russian pipeline some 560 miles from the Ukrainian border in Chuvashia.
Story Credit: thesun.co.uk