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A Bad Omen for Russia’s Fire Safety Problems

Over the years, Russia’s safety record on fires and other accidents has significantly worsened, highlighted more recently by the nightclub fire in Perm which prompted widespread criticism and anger over government standards and bureaucratic corruption.  In a New York Times article from a few years ago, CJ Chivers notes that more than 17,000 people died in fires in 2006 in Russia, nearly 13 for every 100,000 people, which is greater than 10 times the rate of a typical Western country. 

This news from CNN isn’t going to do much to help change that perception:

The chief of Moscow’s firefighting service died in a blaze that broke out at a business center in the northern part of the city, Russian media reported Sunday.

Col. Yevgeny Chernyshev went missing after he entered the building to help evacuate people after the blaze broke out in the business center Saturday night, according to the state-run news agencies RIA Novosti and Itar-Tass.

His body was later found, Mikhail Verzilin, senior emergencies ministry official, told reporters. It was believed Chernyshev died when the building’s roof collapsed.