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Raw footage: meteorite shower video

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A meteor crashing in the Urals of central Russia has reportedly injured at least 400 people, as the shockwave blew out windows and rocked buildings.

Most of those hurt suffered minor cuts and bruises but some received head injuries, Russian media report.

A fireball was seen streaking through the sky above the city of Yekaterinburg, followed by loud bangs.

The meteor is believed to have landed in a lake near Chebarkul, a town in the neighbouring Chelyabinsk region.

Much of the impact was felt in the city of Chelyabinsk, some 200km (125 miles) south of Yekaterinburg.

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It suddenly became as bright as if it was day"

Viktor Prokofiev
Yekaterinburg resident
"We saw a big burst of light, then went outside to see what it was and we heard a really loud thundering sound," Chelyabinsk resident Sergey Hametov told AP news agency by phone.

Officials say a large meteor partially burned up in the lower atmosphere, resulting in fragments falling earthwards.

Thousands of rescue workers have been dispatched to the area to provide help to the injured, the emergencies ministry said.

The Chelyabinsk region, about 1,500km (930 miles) east of Moscow, is home to many factories, a nuclear power plant and the Mayak atomic waste storage and treatment centre.

'Blinding'

Elena Gorshkova sent BBC News this image of the meteor above Yekaterinburg
A loud noise, resembling an explosion, resounded through Chelyabinsk at around 09:20 (05:20 GMT).

"There was panic," Mr Hametov said.

"People had no idea what was happening. Everyone was going around to people's houses to check if they were okay."

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Submitted: 02/15/2013
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