Sporadic blasts continue after fire at Balaklia military depots
Sporadic ammunition blasts of a varying intensity were observed in the territory of the military arsenal in Kharkiv region's Balaklia as of 07:00 a.m. local time on Saturday, the press service for the Ukrainian State Emergencies Service has said.
The Ukrainian Defense Ministry's two fire-fighter tanks are involved in containing and extinguishing fire outbreaks, the Ukrainian State Emergencies Service's three fire trucks are used to supply water and fill the tanks with it. Ukrzaliznytsia's two fire-fighter trains are on duty at Shebelynka railway station.
A total of 1,465 people and 234 pieces of equipment, including 410 people and 107 pieces of equipment from the Ukrainian State Emergencies Service, are involved in response and recovery of the emergency situation, 15 pyrotechnic units (75 employees and 27 pieces of equipment) are working on the scene, the press service said.
Sporadic detonations of ammunition are occurring in the arsenal's open areas, the Ukrainian Defense Ministry said.
The fire at depots in Balaklia was extinguished, however, separate smoldering spots still remain as of Saturday morning, the ministry said.
Measures to prevent re-ignition are being taken, it said.
"Military bomb disposal experts together with the Ukrainian State Emergencies Service's experts are checking the territory for unexploded ordnances and give an operative response to reports from residents of dangerous discoveries. Operational teams are arriving at the site at once and they take the discovered ordnances to the areas prepared beforehand," the ministry said.
Work on further recovery of consequences of the fire is underway.
As reported, a fire and explosions started at ammunition deports near the city of Balaklia, Kharkiv region, in the early hours of March 23.
About 20,000 people were evacuated from the potential impact zone, essential services were provided to them: facilities to accommodate them were opened, hot meals, water supply and medical services were arranged. Work of potentially dangerous facilities was suspended.
Ukrainian Prime Minister Volodymyr Groysman said that explosions continued on nearly half of the depots' area and the emergency might last from three to seven days.