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Head Electrician Axed Over Metro Fire

The head of the Moscow Metro's electrical power supply department will lose his job over the cable fire that caused chaos on the Red Line on Wednesday, metro chief Ivan Besedin announced Friday.

"This is the chief engineer's area of responsibility and he will be severely reprimanded, while the head of the power supply department will be relieved of his duties," RIA-Novosti quoted Besedin as saying.

Service on the Sokolnicheskaya Line was interrupted for several hours when a high-voltage cable caught fire in the tunnel running between Okhotny Ryad and Biblioteka Imeni Lenina metro stations.

Acrid smoke spread through the tunnels and reached Okhotny Ryad station forcing the evacuation of 4,500 passengers.

Nearly 80 passengers required medical assistance, and more than people were hospitalized.

Nine are still in hospital, RIA-Novosti said.

Legal experts anticipate a wave of law suits against the Moscow Metro from injured passengers seeking compensation, and they believe that they stand a good chance of winning, the report said.

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