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Plushenko in car involved in accident

| Saturday, Feb. 18, 2006

TURIN, Italy -- A car taking Evgeni Plushenko to the Milan airport was involved in an accident in dense fog early Friday morning, hours after the Russian won the gold medal in Olympic men's figure skating.

No one was hurt in the chain-reaction collision, said Ari Zakarian, Plushenko's agent.

Zakarian said Plushenko, his coach and his choreographer were being driven to the Milan airport to fly back to St. Petersburg, Russia, where Plushenko lives and trains. He was to be honored by the city for his Olympic victory.

According to Zakarian, Plushenko was being chauffeured by a representative of a Russian Olympic team sponsor.

Turin police spokeswoman Valeria d'Ubald said Plushenko took his plane as scheduled.

"It was a bump, a minor accident, a very, very small accident," d'Ubald said. "The car wasn't damaged seriously."

Plushenko is scheduled to be back in Turin in time for the closing exhibition of skating champions Feb. 24. After that, Zakarian said, Plushenko will have shows in Europe and Asia and Russia and will make a decision "in about a week" if he will go to the World Figure Skating Championships in Calgary from March 20-26.

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