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No threat to environment after Proton rocket accident - Russia’s met office

May 16, 2015, 20:41 UTC+3 MOSCOW
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MOSCOW, May 16. /TASS/. An accident with the Proton-M rocket carrier poses no threat to environment, Russia’s Roshydrometcentr meteorological office said on Saturday.

"According to data available by the Roshydrometcentr Situational Centre, assessments of possible aftermaths carried out by specialists of the Roshydromet Typhoon research centre testify that there is no threat of environmental pollution for Russia and bordering states resulting from the accident," the press service said.

An emergency situation happened during the flight of Proton-M carrier, which was launched on Saturday from the Baikonur cosmodrome at 08:47 Moscow time. At the 497th second, one minute to the scheduled separation of the Briz-M booster and the Mexican MexSat-1 space apparatus, which was to be taken to the orbit, an emergency situation was fixed in the rocket-carrier’s third stage. The third stage and the satellite were falling from the height of 161 kilometres, which is sufficient to have all the debris burn up in the atmosphere. The area where they may fall is south-west of the Siberian Baikal region. A preliminary reason of the accident with Proton is a failure of the steering engines of the third stage.

Initially, the launch had been planned for April 29, but was postponed at the client’s request. Boeing, which made the apparatus, needed more time to check the equipment on board.

An interdepartmental commission will look into circumstances of the emergency and make appropriate decisions.

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