Death toll hits 37 | The Daily Star
12:00 AM, January 04, 2019 / LAST MODIFIED: 02:52 AM, January 04, 2019


Death toll hits 37

The number of confirmed dead from a New Year's Eve gas explosion in a Russian apartment block jumped to 37 yesterday as rescuers recovered more bodies from the rubble of the partially collapsed building.

Six children were among the dead, the emergency situations ministry said in a statement, and four people were still unaccounted for.

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Rescuers have been braving temperatures as low as minus 27 degrees Celsius (minus 16 degrees Fahrenheit) to search through mangled concrete and metal at the site in the Ural mountains city of Magnitogorsk.

Six people including two children have been rescued at the site, but no survivors have been found since Tuesday, when a 10-month-old boy was found in what officials described as a "New Year's miracle". All the survivors were in a stable condition.

The explosion tore through the 10-storey building in the industrial city nearly 1,700 kilometres (1,050 miles) east of Moscow in the early hours of Monday.

The Soviet-era block was home to about 1,100 people and the explosion destroyed 35 apartments, leaving dozens homeless.

The emergencies ministry said work was continuing at the site yesterday, with nearly 900 people involved in rescue and recovery efforts.

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