On August 17th, near Sayanogorsk in south central Russia, a catastrophic accident took place in the turbine and transformer rooms of the hydroelectric plant of the Sayano-Shushenskaya dam. The exact cause is still under investigation, but what is known so far is that a tremendous amount of water from the Yenisei River flooded the turbine room, causing at least one transformer explosion and extensive damage to all ten turbines, destroying at least three of them. 74 workers are known to have lost their lives in the accident, while one remains missing. Additionally, 40 tons of transformer oil were spilled into the river, killing an estimated 400 tons of trout in two fisheries. Investigators plan to release findings in two months, as Prime Minister Vladimir Putin called for a nationwide infrastructure inspection. (32 Photos Total)
More pics below the fold:
I picked just three photos from the 32 at the site.
To give you some sense of the size of the dam, here is a full shot with the damaged portion circled.