MOSCOW, August 18./TASS/. Careless handling of fire was the reason behind wildfires in Russia’s Ryazan Region, the press service of the Ministry for Emergency Situations told TASS on Thursday.
"The Russian Ministry for Emergency Situations has opened a criminal case over the wildfire in the Spassky district of the Ryazan Region. Careless handling of fire or other sources of increased danger by an unidentified person was established as preliminary cause," the press service said.
Earlier, emergency services also named careless handling of fire as the cause of the wildfire, speaking to TASS. A criminal case was initiated under Part 1 of Article 261 of the Criminal Code. The maximum penalty under this article is four years in jail.
Head of the Russian Emergencies Ministry Alexander Kurenkov flew to the site of the blaze on Thursday to coordinate the services working there. He also ordered to send an amphibian aircraft Be-200, two Il-76s, a Mi-26 helicopter and three Mi-8 Emergencies Ministry helicopters to the region.
Earlier, the regional authorities announced that there were five wildfires burning on about 800 hectares. As of August 18, three wildfires were burning on a total area of 181 hectares. There is no danger to the local populated areas.