Russia: Residents of collapsed Magnitogorsk apartment block recount tragic events

SOT, reporter (Russian): «So, you are safe, everything is fine?» SOT, Tatiana Ivanchenko, resident of the apartment block which section collapsed in Magnitogorsk (Russian): «We were accommodated in hotels, we were provided with everything. So, everything was organized very well including food and all the rest. It was great!» SOT, reporter (Russian): «On what floor were you?» SOT, resident of... Еще the apartment block which section collapsed in Magnitogorsk (Russian): «On the ninth floor.» SOT, reporter (Russian): «How did you manage to escape?» SOT, resident of the apartment block which section collapsed in Magnitogorsk (Russian): «I looked out of the window but I could not see anything. Then we heard the banging. The wooden windows of my neighbour were blown out. He knocked on [our door] and said that the evacuation started and called us to leave quickly. We got ready, took our documents.» The residents of the apartment block which had a section collapse in Magnitogorsk on December 31 recounted the events of the tragedy on Thursday. «This explosion occurred at five minutes to six. It was a terrible blast as if a bomb went off. The whole building started shaking. Terrible. It was scary,» said Tatiana Ivanchenko, resident of the apartment block. «We were sleeping. The explosion was so strong that we were even thrown up on the bed,» recalled another resident. Currently the residents of the collapsed building sections which remained undamaged are waiting for their turn to get into their apartments and take the necessary personal belongings, documents, and other items. «We took some valuable things but not all of them. Because we did not have time, everyone wants to get into [apartments] to take something,» said one of the residents. Many people noted a strong sense of solidarity of the Magnitogorsk citizens which manifested after the tragedy. «In terms of support, people really united. Today I rode in a taxi and the driver said that at that moment he understood why the Russians won wars. Because of resilience and the Russian soul [which manifests] in such difficult moments. Everybody united. Everyone is so friendly and helps each other,» shared one resident. At about 06:00 local time (01:00 GMT) on Monday, an entire section of a 10-storey tower block in Magnitogorsk collapsed, causing dozens to be trapped under debris in freezing conditions. A total of 39 people were confirmed to have died by EMERCOM.

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