At least two dead in Russian office building fire

"Two men jumped from a window while trying to escape - unfortunately, they died."

Two men have died, and several others are missing after an eight-story office building caught fire near the Russian capital Moscow, authorities said.

Video footage taken in the city of Fryazino shows smoke and flames billowing from at least three of the building's top floors as a group of four people are seen huddling around a broken window trying to escape.

"Two men jumped from the window as they tried to escape - unfortunately they died. The fate of the two women, who were on the eighth floor, is being clarified," Moscow Region Governor Andrei Vorobyov said.

About 30 companies rented space in the office block, and two of them had employees working there at the time of the fire, the governor said.

"There were also oxygen cylinders in the building that caused explosions. This led to the collapse of the floor slabs," he added.

According to emergency services, the fire spread to about 5,000 sq m before it was brought under control.

Deadly fires are common in Russia, which has suffered for years from poor safety standards and has struggled to retrofit old buildings with alarms and firefighting equipment.

A criminal case has been opened in the case, and investigators are determining the circumstances under which the fire occurred, the governor said.| BGNES