Russian apartment building collapses, killing 4 and leaving dozens missing

Russian apartment building collapses, killing 4 and leaving dozens missing

Emergencies minister Yevgeny Zinichev told Putin that between 36 and 40 people could be trapped under the rubble.

A large section of the building collapsed after a gas explosion around 6 am local time at the high-rise in the industrial city of Magnitogorsk, almost 1,700 kilometres east of Moscow in the Ural mountains.

Authorities said five people were hospitalized with injuries and 35 others remained unaccounted for. It happened before dawn when most residents were still asleep on the New Year's Eve.

The country's top investigative agency, the Investigative Committee, said an explosion triggered by a gas leak apparently caused the collapse in the industrial city of Magnitogorsk.

National television broadcast footage of rescue workers combing through mangled heaps of concrete and metal in temperatures of minus 18 Celsius.

The explosion at a residential building in Magnitogorsk resulted in the collapse of one of its sections and damaged some 48 apartments where 110 people lived, according to media reports.

Regional governor Boris Dubrovsky said authorities planned to buy apartments for people who had lost their homes. Rescue efforts are underway. The residents have been evacuated.

People look at the scene of a collapsed apartment building in Magnitogorsk.

Russian President Vladimir Putin has dispatched Health Minister Veronika Skvortsova to the city, Tass reported.

There have been similar incidents in Russian Federation in recent years due to ageing infrastructure and poor safety over gas usage.

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