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00:00:00
>> Managers of a Russian shopping mall where a fire killed 64 people slashed costs because of financial pressure, and appeared to cut corners on construction. When the fire broke out on March 25th mid afternoon during the school holidays, fire alarm and ventilator systems failed and emergency exits where closed.
00:00:20
41 of the victims where children, unofficial probe is ongoing. Reuters Polina Ivanova went to Kemerovo in Siberia Russia, where she spoke to multiple sources.>> The malls management company replace long-serving workers with inexperienced staff and also reduce their numbers. One instance reducing the number of security guards from seven down to three, for four storey building.
00:00:43
Investigators also site problems with construction including high voltage cables laid through the middle of the floor. And the site witnesses who saw electricity cables hanging down over at children's ball pit exactly in the area where investigators say the fire was started by a short circuit.>> Kemerovo's Winter Cherry Mall started life as as sweet factory in Soviet times.
00:01:06
Investigators say the mall conversion opened without a permit which made it an illegal development. It required a big investment and debts rocketed for KKK, the management company. There are fears other Russian malls may under similar pressure.>> Management wants to cut cost and make a return on that investment very quickly that was intensified by the fact of Russia's financial crisis, which started from 2014.
00:01:33
And really dented demand at these low-cost, low-quality moors which had boomed in the proceeding years, from around 2005 to 2011, sort of boom years moors.>> Another fallout from the financial crisis, the Russian government relaxed fire inspections. One due in 2016 wasn't conducted, six people including KKK's director faced trial.
00:01:56
They have denied charges of manslaughter.