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Fire breaks out in Moscow subway tunnel

By Laura Smith-Spark and Alexander Felton, CNN
updated 7:28 AM EDT, Wed June 5, 2013
Commuters wait for the reopening of the Komsomolskaya metro station in Moscow. Thousands were evacuated after a fire.
Commuters wait for the reopening of the Komsomolskaya metro station in Moscow. Thousands were evacuated after a fire.
STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • NEW: 59 people seek medical help after the fire in a tunnel, ministry says
  • NEW: Train services are restored on the affected line
  • A power cable caught fire, the emergency ministry says

(CNN) -- Fifty-nine people sought medical attention after a fire in a tunnel by a Moscow metro station during the Wednesday morning rush hour, Russia's Emergency Situations Ministry said.

Eleven of them were hospitalized, it said. Psychologists were sent to the scene to help those in need.

The underground alert near the Kremlin prompted the evacuation of about 4,500 commuters, the ministry said.

The blaze started when a power cable caught fire in a tunnel near Okhotny Ryad, on the metro's oldest Sokolnicheskaya line, the ministry said. It has been extinguished.

Moscow State University student Petr Sergeiivich, 18, was among passengers evacuated from the metro.

He smelled smoke while riding on a train, which was busy with all the seats taken. When it reached Okhotny Ryad station, police told the passengers to evacuate.

"We see a huge smoke in the metro, but there is no panic in the crowd," he said. "Everyone waited underground quite patiently."

The passengers followed instructions and were back above ground within a few minutes, he said.

Metro services on the Sokolnicheskaya line are now back to normal, the emergencies ministry said.

CNN's Alla Eshchenko contributed to this report.

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