Oil depot set on fire in Tuapse, Russia, locals report explosions, drone attack

28 February, 12:26 PM
An oil depot was on fire in Tuapse (Photo:NV)

An oil depot was on fire in Tuapse (Photo:NV)

A fire broke out overnight on Feb. 28 at an oil terminal in the Black Sea coastal city of Tuapse, in Russia’s Krasnodarky Krai region, with locals reporting two explosions and a possible attack by drones.

The large fire at the Rosneft oil depot broke out in the early hours. Video circulating on social media shows a large cloud of smoke rising from the facility, while photos show the terminal apparently on fire.

Preliminary reports from Tuapse City Council said two drones exploded at the terminal, and locals earlier reported on the Telegram messenger hearing two loud explosions a few seconds a apart, local publication 93.ru said.

Video of day

According to independent Telegram channel Astra, the area was attacked by “two unidentified aircraft,” the terminal’s boiler room was damaged, and two one-and-a-half-meter deep holes were found next to the building.

Astra also added that 30 meters from the site of the explosions there is a military barracks of the Ministry of Defense of the Russian Federation. Other sources have not yet confirmed this information.

Telegram channels Baza and Shot also reported that the oil depot was attacked by drones loaded with explosives, which impacted 100 meters from the oil storage facility.

According to the city administration, at 02.30 a.m. the fire was localized on an area of 200 square meters; the open burning was liquidated at 02.37 a.m., and at 03.00 a.m., the fire was completely extinguished. The city administration has denied that there was any damage to the facility’s oil tanks.

“Oil tanks are not affected. There is no oil spill. There are no victims,” the city administration said.

“Thirty-two firemen and 11 pieces of equipment were used to extinguish the fire. There is no cause for concern.”

Tuapse is located around 500 kilometers from the nearest part of Ukrainian-held territory, between the Russian Black Sea coastal cities of Novorossisk to the north and Sochi to the south.

Ukraine has not declared that it has an operational weapons system capable of striking so deep into Russian territory, but similar attacks have occurred before late last year, notably at the Engles-2 air base near Saratov, some 600 kilometers away from the nearest Ukrainian-held territory.

In November, Ukraine said it was developing a strike drone with a range of 1,000 kilometers and carrying a 75 kilogram explosive warhead. It was said that the drone had been tested, but it was not declared to be in service with the military.

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