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11 carriages of explosives, a giant An-124 and four Il-76s - Operation Move a Mountain begins

By The Siberian Times reporter
16 January 2019

Military strikes from air not ruled out to move giant landslide blocking Bureya River causing flood threat to villages.

The equipment and special explosives is being flown to the Bureya River - which is dammed by the recent giant rockfall - in Khabarovsk region. Picture: Today KHV

Explosives are to be detonated on a vast scale within days to remove a vast mound that threatens flooding to villages in Khabarovsk and Amur regions. 

Reports say use of the armed forces was authorised by the Supreme Commander of the Russian Federation, President Vladimir Putin.

There were claims aerial strikes could be used. 

A video shows some 175 tonnes of military and engineering equipment being flown in to the region seven time zones east of Moscow. 

One giant An-124 Ruslan and four Il-76s are deployed in the operation.

The equipment and special explosives is being flown to the Bureya River - which is dammed by the recent giant rockfall - in Khabarovsk region.

Helicopters and motor transport are to be used for onward transport in what is becoming a huge military exercise. 

11 rail carriages packed with explosives, a giant An-124 Ruslan and four Il-76s - Operation ‘Move a Mountain’ begins


11 rail carriages packed with explosives, a giant An-124 Ruslan and four Il-76s - Operation ‘Move a Mountain’ begins


11 rail carriages packed with explosives, a giant An-124 Ruslan and four Il-76s - Operation ‘Move a Mountain’ begins


11 rail carriages packed with explosives, a giant An-124 Ruslan and four Il-76s - Operation ‘Move a Mountain’ begins


11 rail carriages packed with explosives, a giant An-124 Ruslan and four Il-76s - Operation ‘Move a Mountain’ begins
‘We climbed these slopes today. If they blow up the formed dam, then as a result of the explosion, the remaining part of the hill may collapse into the water. There is a high probability that this will happen.' Pictures: Today KHV


There are warnings today that the use of explosives to clear a major blockage in the Bureya is ‘likely’ to cause a further massive landslide. 

This in turn could create a river 'tsunami' .

Scientists claimed that in December - when the rockfall crashed into the river - a 50 metre high wave swept along the river in the remote territory. If so there were no reports at the time, although changes in water level were noticed. 

A new rockfall would also create a giant wave — but lower. 

Scientist Alexey Makhinov, at the scene,  said: ’Under existing conditions, there is no danger of a new landslide.

‘We climbed these slopes today. If they blow up the formed dam, then as a result of the explosion, the remaining part of the hill may collapse into the water. 

‘There is a high probability that this will happen.' 

He warned: 'The wave height was at least 50 metres (after the December landslide). 

'If there is an explosion and the surviving part of the hill collapses, there will be a tsunami too, but a bit lower.' 

11 rail carriages packed with explosives, a giant An-124 Ruslan and four Il-76s - Operation ‘Move a Mountain’ begins


11 rail carriages packed with explosives, a giant An-124 Ruslan and four Il-76s - Operation ‘Move a Mountain’ begins


11 rail carriages packed with explosives, a giant An-124 Ruslan and four Il-76s - Operation ‘Move a Mountain’ begins
Operation Move A Mountain, the Far East of Russia. Pictures: Today KHV


A massive rockfall on or around 11 December moved so much debris that it would fill 13,600 Olympic-sized swimming pools. 

Incredibly, the falling 34 million cubic metres of debris left a gash in a mountain that could swallow up all the water used if every American showered at the same time. 

As a result a huge mound - some 160 metres high at its peak - blocked the river

Villages upstream in Khabarovsk and Amur regions are threatened with flooding.

Flooding could also disrupt the major Baikal-Amur Mainline rail link unless the army can quickly unblock the river. 

But downstream Bureyskaya hydro power reservoir is not being filled because of the river blockage. 

A local poll in eastern Russian found 27 per cent said the 'blitzkrieg' was unleashed by a meteorite strike, while 33 per cent believed a UFO attack was the cause. 

Alexey Maslov, head of Verkhnebureinsky district where the incident happened, said: “We are trying to find the explanation for this incident.

“I insist that it was a meteorite.” 

The equipment and special explosives is being flown to the Bureya River - which is dammed by the recent giant rockfall - in Khabarovsk region

11 rail carriages packed with explosives, a giant An-124 Ruslan and four Il-76s - Operation ‘Move a Mountain’ begins

Eleven carriages with explosives are delivered to the rockfall site. Pictures: Today KHV


Hunters who first reached the scene - alerted by a sudden and inexplicable change in the flow of the river - reported ‘hot rocks’ on which they could warm their hands.

Their initial guess was that the mayhem was the work of a meteorite strike - even though there were no reports at the time of a Chelyabinsk-type space rock hitting the Russian Far East in December. 

A top British scientist - and expert on landslides - insisted the collapse was not a meteorite or unexplained space incident. 

Professor Dave Petley, of the University of Sheffield, said the mountain slope above the Bureya had a 'pre-existing tension crack or depression'. 

'We can say that this is certainly a rock slope failure, and that it is highly unlikely to be associated with a meteor impact event,' he said.

Comments (3)

Glad to se Pres. Putin get out in front of this matter and get things moving, in no uncertain terms!

And very glad to have The Siberian Times gathering the amazing pictures and staying with the story.
Ted Clayton, Forks, Washington, USA
18/01/2019 00:33
4
3
Yes, please continue to keep us informed, it is very much appreciated. The possibility of causing a chain of further negative impacts is being well thought through no doubt. I apologize for making what some will call a "politically incorrect" joke but........"What is it with men and explosives?"...:-). I hope it is clear that I am just joking on that one. I also see that Alexey Makhinov is trying to raise the important point to consider the high risk associated with this, please listen to Alexey and please be very careful everyone.
Pamela K Tetarenko, United States
17/01/2019 21:46
1
0
Most probably the Brit professor was right. The landslide was just a happening in nature. But this is, of course, no - sexy- explanation. meteors, ET and the likes are much more interesting. brings more clicks, likes, reads and advertising $$$. such is life. now let's see what the Army Engineers Corps will do. Blow the whole thing to high heaven and fix it or cause even more damage? Keep us informed Sib Times!
MORAK Benedikjt, Moscow
17/01/2019 06:05
1
0
1

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