Tragic Underground Flood: Moscow Tour Group Fatally Trapped in Sewers

In a heart-wrenching occurrence, a tour group in Moscow faced a fatal tragedy as they became trapped beneath the ground by sudden floodwaters. Let’s delve into the details of this unfortunate incident and understand how it unfolded.

According to Russian media, a tour guide and all seven members of their party lost their lives after being trapped by surging floodwaters in the city’s sewer system. The floods, triggered by heavy rainfall on Sunday, escalated so swiftly that escape became an impossibility.

The group’s exploration had taken them to the underground Neglinka, a tributary connected to Moscow’s main river, the Moskva. The search operation has concluded, and authorities are now engaged in the somber task of formally identifying the victims, as reported by investigators.

Addressing the incident on Monday, City Mayor Sergei Sobyanin described it as a “terrible tragedy.”

Within Moscow, numerous companies offer guided tours of the historical sewer network, some of which date back to the 19th Century. Tragically, most of the victims were swept into the Moskva River and were eventually located by divers near the central Zaryadye park.

Amid the investigation, a criminal inquiry has been initiated due to the incident being labeled as an “illegal excursion.” Allegations have surfaced about inadequate adherence to safety protocols during the ill-fated tour. Investigative authorities have managed to identify three individuals responsible for organizing the tour. While one of them has been arrested and charged, another is believed to have fled the country and is reportedly in the United Arab Emirates.

Initially, the Ria news agency reported that more than 20 people had signed up for the tour. However, due to the adverse weather forecast, most withdrew their participation. This tragic incident serves as a poignant reminder of the potential risks associated with such activities and the critical importance of prioritizing safety measures.

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