UPDATED: Locals say evacuation of nuclear testing area Nyonoksa is cancelled
Locals from the closed military settlement on the White Sea coast were early this week told that they would have to leave the area on Wednesday morning between 5-7 am.
The evacuation was reportedly planned and had nothing to do with last week’s missile explosion, representatives of Russian military authorities explained to the locals, 29.ru reports. Trains would pick up the locals and bring them out of the area.
Late Tuesday, however, the evacuation was cancelled and all locals were allowed to stay home, the online newspaper informs.
According to an inhabitant in the village, locals are regularly told to leave the area. «It happens regularly - about once per month and everybody is evaluated away from the village,» the person told 29.ru.
Nyonoksa is located on the coast of the White Sea about 20 km west of Severodvinsk. It has a population of about 450 people.
A blast on Thursday rocked the small village that houses a strategically important testing site for the Russian Armed Forces.
State nuclear corporation Rosatom two days after the incident confirmed that five of their staff specialists were killed in the blast and admitted that the liquid propulsion system that exploded contained a «isotope power source.» On Monday, Director of the Russian Federal Nuclear Centre VNIIEF in the closed nuclear research town of Sarov, Vyacheslav Solovyov, used the word «fissile» when talking about the accident in an interview with a local TV station.
The accident resulted in a significant hike in radiation in Severodvinsk.
Several of the seriously injured people in the accident were brought to hospitals in Arkhangelsk and Moscow. Ten of the doctors that treated the injured are now reported to themselves head to a special clinic in Moscow for control.
«The government of Arkhangelsk region is taking a series of prophylactic measures as additional steps of control following the incident in the area of Nyonoksa,» regional authorities told 29.ru.
The treatment in Moscow is reportedly conducted on the initiative of the medial workers themselves, but all costs are covered by the regional government, a spokesperson for the regional government explains.
In a comment, Russian presidential spokesman Dmitry Peskov on Tuesday underlined that «all competent authorities» are involved on site and do whatever needed to provide security to people.
According to 29.ru, the village of Nyonoksa as well as other nearby villages have also previously been hit by accidents not the local testing site. In December 2015, the test site made headlines in Russian media and the Barents Observer after a cruise missile accidentally hit an apartment block in the nearby village.