A HUGE fire ripped through a major gas pipeline in Russia after an explosion.
Thick plumes of smoke and a huge fireball could be seen for miles around the crime scene near Putin’s hometown of St. Petersburg after the explosion.
It is believed that it was Gazprom Transgaz SPB’s main gas pipeline that blew up – affecting up to a million people.
Russia was quick to point the finger at alleged sabotage, claiming an accident was “impossible”.
The Telegram channel of the gas industry Gaz Batyushka reported to an anonymous expert source that “without external influence, an explosion is impossible.”
The broadcaster said, “We agree… it’s possible this was a terrorist attack.”
Emergency vehicles, including ambulances, were rushed to the scene even though the blast did not occur near any residential areas.
Investigators and forensic scientists were also confused as they searched for the cause of the explosion.
One theory was that the explosion could have been due to sabotage related to the war in Ukraine.
Russia has deliberately targeted Ukraine’s vital energy supply lines in recent attacks that have been condemned around the world.
This week, a Swedish prosecutor said investigators found traces of explosives at the site of the damaged Nord Stream gas pipelines, confirming sabotage had taken place.
Today’s explosion caused a shutdown of the Severnaya thermal power plant, which heats hundreds of thousands of homes at once when temperatures hover around minus 5C.
Another local reported: “A gas pipe exploded in the forest.
“Our house was shaking, we thought it was a bomb, and the war had come here.”
According to one report, local power supplies switched to oil after the blast to ensure heating for homes in the area.
The plant supplies electrical and thermal energy to factories, residential areas and public buildings in the northern part of St. Petersburg’s Vyborgsky and Kalininsky districts, as well as the Novoe Devyatkino and Murino settlements, and the Vsevolozhsky district of the Leningrad region.
In total, more than 800,000 people receive heat from the Severnaya power plant.
Energy officials looked for alternative sources of supply at the power plant near St. Petersburg.
A local resident named Andrei told 47news he was at home when the blast happened.
He said: “It hit so hard the walls were shaking.
“And then there was a sound like you’re standing at an airfield and a supersonic plane is flying overhead.
“You can’t get near the place.”
Video from the channel showed flames raging more than two hours after the blast.
https://www.the-sun.com/news/6716992/fireball-st-petersburg-gas-pipeline-explosion/ Huge fireball after gas pipeline explosion in St Petersburg as Russia claims accident ‘impossible’