More than a dozen gold miners are still missing, Interfax news agency reported, citing emergency services.
The Emergencies Ministry said a major search and rescue operation was underway after the 6am calamity.
At least 15 people have died and 13 others are missing after a dam collapse at a gold mine in Siberia.
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President Vladimir Putin ordered all necessary measures to be taken to help those affected, to identify the cause of the disaster and prevent any impact on a nearby residential area, Interfax quoted Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov as saying. Russia's Investigative Committee said in a statement that it had opened a criminal probe into the safety violations at the gold mine.
Investigators said separately 14 workers were hospitalized.
The Emergencies Ministry also said seven people were unaccounted for, Russian news reports said.
The mine was in a remote location about 160km (100 miles) south of the city of Krasnoyarsk, itself some 4,000km (2,500 miles) east of Moscow.
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A number of top regional officials including governor Alexander Uss, prosecutors and inspectors went to the scene of the tragedy.
The dam was built in violation of "every single norm", the head of the local government, Yury Lapshin, said in televised remarks.
Russian Health Minister Veronika Skvortsova was overseeing the delivery of aid to the injured.
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