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ACCIDENT & EMERGENCY

Crumbling metro stations in St Petersburg, Russia, are undergoing emergency inspections following last week's collapse of a 35-year-old concrete station canopy, which killed five people. Sennaya Ploschad station in the city centre was crowded with commuters on Thursday evening when the cantilever entrance canopy came down. Eyewitness reports suggest the collapse was progressive, with initial loud cracking noises giving enough warning for those at the edge of the area to flee to safety before the 15t slab plunged 10m to the ground.Officials soon ruled out explosion or impact as the cause of the collapse but admitted the ageing structure had never been inspected or maintained, and that the condition of the reinforcement was likely to be poor.

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