The United Shipbuilding Company confirmed the incident, adding that nobody was hurt in it. According to the the shipyard's spokesperson, the submarine’s nuclear reactor was shut down and its weapons unloaded before the repair started.
“There is no open fire at the moment, but there is heavy smoke,” reported Itar-Tass citing its own source.
“The fire affected an area of some 20 square meters. The insulation between the hulls of the sub is burning,” a source told RIA Novosti news agency.
The fire at the Zvezdochka shipyard, in the Arkhangelsk Region town of Severodvinsk, started as welders were working at the K-266 Oryol, an Oscar II-class nuclear-powered submarine, the source said.
Oscar II submarines, designated Project 959A Antey in the Russian Navy, are designed to attack aircraft carrier groups with P-700 Granit (SS-N-19 Shipwreck according to NATO designation) supersonic cruise missiles as their primary weapons.
A total of 11 such submarines were built. The nuclear sub Kursk that sank in August 2000, killing all submariners aboard, belonged to this class. Two others were decommissioned while the others remain in active service.
K-266 Oryol is part of Russia’s Northern Fleet and entered service in December 1992. It was transported to the shipyard in November 2013 for a scheduled overhaul, which is to last until 2016.