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Russian atomic submarine catches fire in shipyard: Russian media

The Emergencies Ministry declined comment on the reports of the fire at the Zvyozdochka shipyard, where the agencies said the 155-meter-long (just over 500 feet) 949 Antei submarine was being repaired. There was no word of any casualties.

“There is a fire on the submarine. We are fighting the fire now,” a shipyard source told Interfax news agency.

RIA quoted a spokesperson at the shipyard as saying there were no weapons on board the submarine.

A source told TASS news agency the submarine’s nuclear reactor had been shut down prior to the blaze.

“The active zone of the reactor was unloaded at the start of repairs a few years ago,” the source said.

The news agency reports said the fire had started during welding, causing insulation materials to catch fire.

A similar blaze in 2011 nearly led to a nuclear disaster as a blaze engulfed a nuclear-powered submarine carrying atomic weapons, a leading Russian magazine reported months after the blaze, contradicting official assurances that it was not armed.

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