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30 Aug, 2009 11:13

Fatal hydroplant blast ruled no terror attack

An investigation into the blast at the Sayano-Shushenskaya power plant in the republic of Khakassia has ruled out the possibility of either a terrorist attack or water surge.

It is now believed there are a large number of factors behind the disaster. According to the latest statements, negligence has also been ruled out.

At the same time, technical authorities are still working to uncover the true causes of the tragedy.

The accident claimed the lives of 72 people, with three others still missing after a dam burst at the power plant two weeks ago.

However, the state of emergency imposed in Khakassia on August 17 was lifted on Friday by the republic's head, Viktor Zimin.

Some 1,400 rescuers from different parts of Russia worked at the scene of the accident. They were aided by several hundred workers from other emergency services. Energy specialists have since taken control of the station from the rescuers.

RusHydro, which owns the Sayano-Shushenskaya hydropower plant, is bringing in hundreds of energy specialists from its territorial branches in order to carry out repairs and reconstruction at the station. Their number may reach 2,500 in the days to come.

In a recent interview, Russian president Dmitry Medvedev said the catastrophe was a tough lesson the country should learn from as it moves on with future modernizations.

We need to draw all necessary conclusions from these events. First of all, we need to complete the investigation currently underway, including establishing the technical causes of the accident – identifying the main causes and secondary factors. We need to draw conclusions from this disaster regarding our present life and future plans. I’m referring to our plans for the country’s modernization,” the President said.