On the evening of August 12th, a civilian bus exploded in Russia’s Voronezh.
A total of 19 people were injured, two were killed, the press service of the Ministry of Health said.
“The victims were hospitalized in Voronezh hospitals with injuries of varying severity: the condition of three is assessed by doctors as serious, and eight people are in a state of moderate severity,” the report says.
Another seven received outpatient care.
The PAZ shuttle bus carrying 35 passengers exploded near the Chizhova Gallery shopping center in Voronezh.
The driver, Alexei, noted that all the seats were occupied.
“We were standing at a bus stop, people were getting on the bus, the red light came on. They entered from a pedestrian crossing. I leave – this is such cotton, glass, smoke – I don’t understand what’s going on,” the man said.
One of the victims confirmed to RIA Voronezh that the explosion occurred when people at the bus stop got on the bus.
“I remember the last fire. Big flame. Then, I don’t know how, I got off the bus myself. Eyewitnesses helped me treat my wounds. Those who were sitting in the back got the most: they were all covered in blood. I don’t know how to describe it. Many lost consciousness right in the car, and they were dragged out by people,” said a girl who was sitting in the bus on the third row on the left.
She added that she will go to the hospital to find out if she is in any shock, or if she has an injury or broken glass in her body.
One of the eyewitnesses to the tragedy told the agency that he was at work when he heard the explosion.
“I came running, people flew out of the windows. People were injured, someone’s legs were torn off. Many passers-by helped, the ambulance arrived quickly enough,” he recalled.
Another eyewitness noted that at first there was “a strong roar, as if the house had exploded.”
“Then clouds of blue smoke rose (the bus itself was not visible from my side). I was just talking to my son on the phone, and he said that such smoke can be in a collision of cars on gas,” she said. The woman watched the incident from her balcony.
As a source told RT, no traces of damaging elements were found on the spot, which usually means there was no IED on the bus.
Nevertheless, a car of the FSB explosives arrived at the scene, residents of Voronezh were urged to be attentive to foreign objects in public places.
“Drivers will also inform passengers to pay attention to any foreign objects. A thorough inspection of vehicles will be organized at all motor depots,” said the Governor of the Voronezh Region, Alexander Gusev.
According to RT, investigators are considering various versions of the emergency: a malfunction of technical equipment and the transportation of an explosive object or a gas cylinder by a passenger.
The Investigative Committee opened a criminal case under the article on the performance of work or the provision of services that do not meet safety requirements.
The head of the department, Alexander Bastrykin, sent criminologists and investigators to Voronezh, the investigation was taken under control in the central office.
The National Anti-Terrorism Committee noted that they are working on various versions of what happened.
The Governor of the Voronezh Region, Alexander Gusev, expressed sympathy for all the victims and promised that they would receive assistance. In addition, he instructed to check the fleets of all passenger carriers.
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