Rescuers fight through the bitter cold cold in the Urals in Russia and search for survivors after a gas explosion has been carried through a skyscraper that killed at least four people.
According to officials, up to 40 people could be trapped under police debris, at least seven of them children, after the explosion on Monday, a large part of the residential building in the industrial city of Magnitogorsk, about 1,700 km east of the capital Moscow collapsed ,
The state television showed rescuers combing piles of concrete and metal at -18 degrees Celsius, but Russian officials admitted that the chances of finding someone alive diminished.
"Chances are diminishing over time," said Health Minister Veronika Skvortsova as she was pushed by reporters on the likelihood of finding trapped survivors.
"But incredible stories happen."
Witnesses told Russian television that the explosion was strong enough to destroy the world near buildings.
"I woke up and felt falling, the walls were gone, my mother screamed and my son was buried," a witness said.
President Vladimir Putin has rushed to the city, where the explosion on New Year's Eve left hundreds of people homeless in icy temperatures, Russia's biggest holiday of the year.
The authorities said rescue teams should have worked through the night, with local temperatures expected to drop to -23 ° C.
Officials warned two more sections of the Soviet skyscraper on Karl In Marx Street, the collapse threatened.
Magnitogorsk, with more than 400,000 inhabitants, is located in the mineral rich south of the Ural Mountains and is home to one of the largest steel producers in the country.
The skyscraper was built in 1
The local governor Boris Dubrovsky told Putin that the authorities had published the list of missing persons in the hope they were in. So elsewhere, when the blast took place, she would report her whereabouts. He promised to quickly provide new housing for the homeless.
Investigators opened a criminal investigation into the accident, with the FSB security service confirming the incident as a gas explosion.
Such deadly gas explosions are relatively common in Russia, where much of the infrastructure dates back to the Soviet era, and security requirements are often ignored.