Russian Surgeons Perform Open-Heart Surgery During Hospital Blaze

Surgeons in Russia’s Far East successfully performed an open-heart surgery despite the outbreak of a major fire in their hospital Friday.

A wiring malfunction is believed to have caused the fire at the cardiac surgery center in the city of Blagoveschensk, regional prosecutors told state media. Around 120 personnel and patients were evacuated as the blaze spread across 1,600 square meters of the building’s roof.

The team of eight surgeons, who had already started operating on their patient, remained in the first-floor operating room to complete the procedure as it couldn’t be halted early, the city’s mayor said on Telegram.

The operation was completed successfully and the surgeons and their patient were evacuated from the building, Interfax cited a source as saying. The patient was transferred to a regional hospital for postoperative care in stable condition, the source added.

The fire was contained with the help of 59 firefighters and 28 pieces of equipment, the Emergency Situations Ministry told the state-run TASS news agency.

Amur region Governor Vasily Orlov is now preparing awards for the doctors, he wrote on his Telegram channel.

Russian Town Dusts Highway With Sand, Human Bones

The Kolyma Highway, a road in Russia’s Far East built with Gulag labor during the Stalin era, is often called the Road of Bones due to the estimated 250,000 to 1,000,000 people who were buried along it after dying during its construction.

Westward in the Siberian region of Irkutsk, a new road of bones has appeared after municipal crews used sand containing human bones as a de-icer.

Photos posted on social media over the weekend showed fragments of bones and skulls on the surface of the road in the town of Kirensk 5,400 kilometers east of Moscow.

Interfax cited an unnamed source familiar with the matter as saying that a company involved in the municipal work had extracted the sand from a site close to an old cemetery.

“The skull is probably about 100 years old. Experts are now studying it and the other bones to determine their exact age and possible origin,” the source was quoted as saying. The source added that the human remains have since been removed.

The RBC news website reported that the sand was taken from an area close to a Russian Civil War-era burial site.

The Irkutsk region’s Interior Ministry confirmed to Interfax that the bones are human, adding that it has launched an investigation into the incident.

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