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Rare 'Fire Tornado' Rips Through Far East Russian Village

Monday's "fire tornado" in the Primorye region. Social media

A rare "fire tornado" ripped through a village in Far East Russia’s Primorye region over the weekend, media reported on Monday, as unseasonably warm weather, dry grass and strong winds continued to feed wildfires throughout the region.

Video shared on social media showed the whirlwind of black smoke approaching a building, while a man nearby could be seen running for shelter.

According to Russian state media, the fire tornado touched down in the village of Provalovo, located in the Primorye region's southern Khasansky district, which has been especially impacted by wildfires in recent days. 

Experts told the state-run TASS news agency that the fire tornado was the first ever recorded in the region.

Regional authorities announced they were devoting additional equipment and personnel to assist with battling the wildfires, which intensified over the weekend and now threaten residential buildings and infrastructure. 

"All measures must be taken to prohibit the burning [of dry grass], lighting fires in these municipalities, identifying those who violate the fire safety regime and holding them accountable," Primorye region Governor Oleg Kozhemyako said

Wildfire season has already started in several regions across Russia, where most wildfires are caused by human activity, such as the burning of dry grass.

However, climate change has contributed to increasingly larger and more powerful wildfires in recent decades.

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