MOSCOW, January 31. /TASS/. Firefighters have managed to fully put out the fire in the main library of the Institute for Information on Social Sciences /INION/, which reports to the Russian Academy of Sciences, a spokesman for the Moscow City branch of the Ministry for Emergency Situations and Civil Defense told TASS.
"The fire was fully extinguished at 23:24 Moscow Standard Time," he said.
Full elimination of the blaze took 25 hours.
Fire in the library broke out on Friday night and the Center of Crisis Situations Reponse received a notice on it at 22:09 Moscow Standard Time.
First firefighting crews arrived at the spot within six minutes but pars of the roof and inter-floor decks collapsed soon after their arrival and open flames started spreading gradually across the third floor.
While the total floor space of the building is about 12,000 square meters, the blaze swept the area of around 2,000 sq m.
The firefighting service assigned Rank 3 to the fire on a scale of five possible ranks.
"One of the most probable causes of the big spread of this fire was an overly late reporting to the emergency services," a source at Moscow’s Interior Department said.
At the time the blaze was sparked, there was no one except guards in the 20-meters-tall building. Smoke rising from its roof was notices by eyewitnesses from the outside, who called the firefighting service.
Police also said that experts could not get down to clarifying the causes of the incident, since it was still dangerous for them to stay inside the building, and especially in the former fire bed.
"It’s too early yet to discuss any versions of what happened," the source said. "There are several possible versions including short circuit but they are still highly theoretical.".