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Kamaz truck driver dies in fire at carrier rocket stage drop zone

MOSCOW, June 15. /TASS/. The driver of a Kamaz truck operated by Russia’s NPO Mashinostroyenia rocket-and-space enterprise has died while extinguishing a fire in the Kazakh steppe, which erupted at the drop zone of the stages of the Russian Soyuz-2.1a carrier rocket, the Roscomos Space Corporation reported on Thursday.

"According to the available information, the Kamaz truck driver, an employee of JSC NPO Mashinostroyenia, has died while extinguishing the fire. JSC NPO Mashinostroyenia (not affiliated to Roscosmos) oversees maintenance of the drop zones. The fire engulfed the Kamaz vehicle after a particularly strong gust of wind," says a report obtained by TASS.

According to Roscosmos, the rocket’s stages fell in the designated area about 50 kilometers west of the city of Zhezkazgan. The rocket was launched from Kazakhstan’s Baikonur Spaceport. It carried the Progress-MS-06 cargo spacecraft to the International Space Station.

"Due to difficult weather conditions in the drop zone, a steppe fire emerged in a desolate location. There is no threat to the population, the fire has been localized," the corporation said.