Pictures : Russia starts clean-up after meteor strike injures more than 1000

Pictures : Russia starts clean-up after meteor strike injures more than 1000

Chelyabinsk : Russia | Feb 16, 2013 at 8:56 AM PST
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Meteorite crash in Russia: Explosions in Chelyabinsk

Thousands of Russian emergency workers went out on Saturday clean-up operation in the hard-hit Russian city of Chelyabinsk day after a spectacular meteor blast shook Russia's Urals region. was the largest since the Tunguska blast in Siberia in 1908 and released about 33 times the energy of the atomic bomb that destroyed Hiroshima.

Some buildings were unscathed , shattering windows and showering people with broken glass when meteor that streaked across the skies over Russia in a blinding fireball on Friday exploded with a force about 30 times greater than the Hiroshima bomb, Nasa scientists have said.

More than 1,000 people were injured, including more than 200 children, according to news reports. Many of them were hit by flying glass according to Russian space agency Roscosmos, blazed across the horizon, leaving a long white trail visible as far as 200 km (125 miles) away.

Nationalist leader Vladimir Zhirinovsky told reporters in Moscow it could have been "war-mongers" in the United States. "It's not meteors falling. It's a new weapon being tested by the Americans," he said. according to Reuters

Divers searched a lake near the city of Chelyabinsk region's frozen Lake Chebarkul for a fragment of the meteorite where a hole several feet wide had opened in the ice,officials said. NASA estimated the meteor was 55 feet across before entering Earth's atmosphere and weighed about 10,000 tons around 30 times the force of the nuclear bomb dropped on Hiroshima in 1945.

"We would expect an event of this magnitude to occur once every 100 years on average," said Paul Chodas of Nasa's Near-Earth Object Program Office.

"When you have a fireball of this size we would expect a large number of meteorites to reach the surface and in this case there were probably some large ones," he said in a statement published on the Nasa website.

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Meteorite crash in Russia: Explosions in Chelyabinsk
Falconcrest is based in Cairo, Kairo, Egypt, and is a Reporter on Allvoices.
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