Crimea’s Kerch bridge partially collapses after powerful explosion: LIVE UPDATES

Large fire at the Kerch Bridge in occupied Crimea. Source

Crimea

At 6:29 AM of 8 October, the Telegram channel of the Kerch-based news site Kerch.info reported an explosion and fire in the area of the Kerch Bridge which connects occupied Crimea to Russia:

“‘Panes broke’: Kerch residents woke up to the sound of an explosion. Eyewitnesses told about a strong fire on the Crimean bridge…” the report goes.

One of the photos of the Kerch Bridge fire published by a local Telegram channel shows at least two conflagrations: one on the railway bridge, and the other near it:

Crimea’s Kerch bridge partially collapses after powerful explosion: LIVE UPDATES ~~

Fire at the Kerch bridge. Source.

The later images from the scene show what appears to be a train sitting on the bridge with at least one of its cars engulfed in fire:

https://twitter.com/EuromaidanPress/status/1578600401498247168

Update:At 6:56, Russia’s TASS reported:

“According to preliminary data, a fuel tank [railroad] car has been on fire at one of the sections of the Crimean bridge, shipping arches aren’t damaged, said an adviser to the head of the Crimea, Oleg Kryuchkov.”

Meanwhile, not only the fuel train is on fire but also the vehicle portion of the Kerch bridge has collapsed, as the footage from the scene shows:

https://twitter.com/EuromaidanPress/status/1578606553623662592

Update:Russia’s RIA Novosti cites the country’s “National Anti-Terrorism Committee” as saying,

“Today at 06:07 on the automotive part of the Crimean bridge from the side of [Russia’s] Taman Peninsula a truck was blown up, resulting in the fire of seven fuel tanks of the railway train, which was moving towards the Crimean Peninsula,” RIA Novosti wrote adding that the Committee added that two spans of the vehicle bridge “partially collapsed” while the “arch above the ground part of the bridge is not damaged.”

Update: A ferry crossing between occupied Crimea and Russia’s Krasnodar Krai will start operating on October 8, Russia’s state-controlled TASS reports, citing the Russian occupation head of Crimea Sergei Aksenov. Meanwhile, footage of the moment of the explosion has surfaced:

https://twitter.com/EuromaidanPress/status/1578634983714979840?t=MrZEz0SliKEgdH9tyog8fQ&s=19

Update, 11:12:Traffic on the Crimean bridge has been suspended, Russia’s state-controlled RIA Novosti was told by the Taman road department. Trains traveling to Crimea will not be departing temporarily and ticket sales have been suspended, Russian Railways said. Yandex.Maps shows that the bridge will be blocked until October 31.

Russia’s Energy Ministry said Crimea has enough gas and diesel for “at least 15 days” and supplies of food and necessities to last 55 days, RIA Novosti reported. Sales of non-perishable foods has been limited to 3 kg to one client, according to Crimea’s occupation authorities.

https://twitter.com/EuromaidanPress/status/1578664435702718465?t=PRs11zvC0x7MIYNybO-Nlw&s=19

Update, 11:46:

Ukrainian officials comment on the Crimean bridge explosion:

“Crimea, the bridge, the beginning. Everything illegal must be destroyed, everything stolen must be returned to Ukraine, everything occupied by Russia must be expelled.” – Zelenskyy aide Podoliak

Meanwhile, Ukraine’s NSDC Secretary Danilov has hinted that the Crimean bridge explosion is a belated birthday present for Vladimir Putin, posting song sung by actress and singer Marilyn Monroe for President John F. Kennedy on his Facebook page. Putin turned 70 yesterday, on 7 October.

Update, 11:57: Long queues at gas stations, no food on shelves: People in Crimea are in panic after Kerch bridge explosion

People in Crimea rushed to gas stations and formed endless queues after the blast partially destroyed the Kerch Bridge, a symbol of Russia’s 2014 annexation of the peninsula. Most of the products in shops, primarily baked goods, were immediately sold out, Head of the Crimean Tatar Mejlis Refat Chubarov said. According to him, a queue, 2-3 km long was formed in the eastern part of Kerch city. People in the line are trying to get away from Crimea by ferry, Suspilne informed.

Meanwhile, Sergei Aksyonov, the Russia-installed head of the Crimea administration, announced the reopening of the bridge. Passenger cars and buses are allowed to leave the peninsula after inspection.

Crimeans queue to stock up on gas and non-perishables at supermarkets and gas stations, the Telegram channel Baza reports. The occupation governor of Sevastopol says gas will not be sold to fuel canisters, claims gas supplies will last 40 days, flour supplies – 20-30 days.

https://twitter.com/EuromaidanPress/status/1578673549317132288?t=8UKREyoxTOYKNDA8w06y8A&s=19

Update, 14:26: Crimean bridge explosion cuts off railway reinforcements to south-Ukraine Russian occupation forces – journalist

The Crimean bridge explosion that left it inoperable on 8 October leaves the southern grouping of Russian occupation troops in Ukraine without rail supplies, according to journalist Denys Kazanskyi. He explains that there is no direct railroad from Russia through the land corridor to Kherson Oblast. One railroad from the Russian Federation through the land corridor to Kherson Oblast. There is one branch line through Volnovakha, but it runs almost along the front line.

Railway supplies Russian occupation

The Russian Army is reliant on railroads to bring supplies to its troops in Ukraine. The Ukrainian Army has consistently targeted Russian supply lines using western high-precision artillery and has managed to effectively cut off the vulnerable grouping of occupation forces on the right bank of the Dnipro in Kherson Oblast by destroying all bridges across the large river.

Kherson bridges

This happens amid a Ukrainian offensive that has liberated large swaths of territory in the country’s northeast and south from Russian occupation.

Update, 14:45: Ukraine’s security service behind Crimean bridge explosion – Ukrainska Pravda sources

The Ukrainian media Ukrainska Pravda reports, citing its unnamed service in the SBU (Ukraine’s security service) that the agency is behind the explosion at the Kerch bridge connecting occupied Crimea to Russia’s Taman peninsula. However, the agency itself has not commented on the explosion.

A conflagration broke out on the bridge after a truck exploded and set on fire a train car carrying fuel. Two spans of the automotive section of the bridge had partially collapsed. Currently, transit on the bridge is stopped, and it is unclear when it will resume. The explosion has effectively cut off the southern grouping of Russia’s occupation forces from railway reinforcements.

Update, 15:15: Ukrposhta CEO shares new Ukrainian stamp featuring destroyed bridge

Ukrposhta CEO Ihor Smilianskyi shared the photos of the stamp on Telegram, staying it had been prepared with artist Yuriy Shapoval “for a long time.” Includes cotton, the symbol of Ukrainian strikes on Russian-held territory (хлопок, which can be read as either “cotton” or “clap.”). Russian occupiers report on “claps” being heard in order to downplay the Ukrainian strikes.

Update, 23:27: Russia fully restored railway traffic at the Kerch bridge – Russian media

After an explosion had partially destroyed the Crimean bridge on October 8, the Railway of the Crimea announced that Russia fully restored railway traffic on the bridge. “A 15-car train made a successful run after the first stage of repair work was completed on the railroad part of Crimean Bridge,” the company said.

Later, the Russian news agency TASS reported that the first passenger train had departed through the bridge to Moscow

Update, 23:34: Construction of Crimea bridge possible through Dutch companies who violated sanctions yet still have not been punished
https://twitter.com/EuromaidanPress/status/1578728231334998016?t=znB-kjBY5DaRIaVLPRmYAQ&s=19

 

October 9, 3:30 a.m.: Putin orders FSB to take charge of security measures for the Kerch bridge after the attack

On October 8, the blast on the Crimea Bridge over the Kerch Strait caused the partial collapse of the structure, which serves as a crucial link for supplies to Crimea, which the Kremlin illegally annexed in 2014.

After the attack, Russian President Vladimir Putin ordered the Federal Security Service (FSB) to take charge of security measures for a strategic bridge. In his decree, Putin also put the FSB in charge of security for energy infrastructure between Crimea and Russia, Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty informed.

10:45 p.m.: Russia fully restored railway traffic at the Kerch bridge – TASS

After an explosion had partially destroyed the Crimean bridge on October 8, the Railway of the Crimea announced that Russia fully restored railway traffic on the bridge. “A 15-car train made a successful run after the first stage of repair work was completed on the railroad part of Crimean Bridge,” the company said.

Later, the Russian news agency TASS reported that the first passenger train had departed through the bridge to Moscow.

8:25 p.m.: Long queues at gas stations, no food on shelves: People in Crimea are in panic after Kerch bridge explosion

People in Crimea rushed to gas stations and formed endless queues after the blast that partially destroyed the Kerch Bridge, a symbol of Russia’s 2014 annexation of the peninsula. Most of the products in shops, primarily baked goods, were immediately sold out, Head of the Crimean Tatar Mejlis Refat Chubarov said. According to him, a queue, 2-3 km long was formed in the eastern part of Kerch city. Residents in the line are trying to get away from the peninsula by ferry, Suspilne informed.

Meanwhile, Sergei Aksyonov, the Russia-installed head of the Crimea administration, announced the reopening of the bridge. Passenger cars and buses are allowed to leave Crimea after inspection.

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