Explosion at missile plant in Russian Izhevsk: British intelligence voiced versions
A massive explosion on February 7 at a missile plant near Izhevsk (Udmurtia, Russia) was likely caused by careless handling and storage of explosive materials. The pressure from the authorities to increase production for the war against Ukraine has likely resulted in round-the-clock production and staff fatigue; such accidents are likely to occur more frequently in the future.
This is stated in the UK military intelligence report released on February 9. According to the agency, the plant near Izhevsk in central Russia produces a number of ballistic missiles, including the Iskander, which the occupiers regularly use to strike Ukraine.
Initially, it was assumed that the explosion was caused by worker error, although later propagandists for the state-run TASS news agency reported that it was due to "scheduled testing" of rocket engines.
"It is unlikely that Ukrainian unmanned aerial vehicles were involved in the explosion, given the distance to Ukraine of 1,200 kilometers. Moreover, no similar attacks have been reported in the area," British intelligence said.
They also noted that this was at least the fifth "unexplained" explosion at the military-industrial enterprise in the last four months.
Previously, such emergencies occurred at the Kamenskiy Chemical Plant in Rostov on January 15, 2024; the Chelyabinsk Tank Plant on November 26, 2023; and the powder and ammunition plants in Kotovsk on November 10, 2023 and Solikamsk on October 31, 2023.
The British intelligence noted that there is a real possibility that the explosion was caused by negligent handling and storage of volatile, flammable and explosive materials.
"In addition, political pressure from the top leadership to increase the production of the military industry to support the war in Ukraine has likely led to round-the-clock production and staff fatigue. Increased production requirements are likely to lead to an increase in industrial accidents in the future," the report said.
As reported by OBOZ.UA, on February 7, residents of Izhevsk heard a powerful explosion, and soon it became known about a large-scale fire at the military plant's training ground 12 km from the city. The company produces, among other things, R30 3M30 Bulava-30 sea-launched intercontinental ballistic missiles and Topol-M strategic missile systems.