Several neighborhoods in the east of Moscow were briefly shrouded in billowing steamy fog after a major heating pipe burst in the area in freezing temperatures.
Muscovites were landed in a setting fitting Stephen King’s “The Mist” or the “Silent Hill” franchise, following a mundane municipal service malfunction. A 80cm (over 2ft) wide heating pipe ruptured late on Wednesday, spilling boiling-hot water into the below-zero environment.
This resulted in what appears to be apocalyptic images recorded by witnesses at the scene.In one video people, barely seen through the billowing clouds, appear to be huddling on the hood of a car to avoid the hot water covering the road.
With temperatures at about -3 Celsius (26.6 Fahrenheit), reports varied on how many households were left with reduced heating and hot water supply, or none at all. Official Energy Ministry reports cited by Russian media said some 900 apartment buildings were affected, while unnamed sources in the Emergencies Ministry put the number at 2,000. However, by about 5 am Moscow time (2 am GMT), Deputy Mayor Pyotr Biryukov announced the central heating was restored to all affected areas.
Six people suffered scalding in the initial rupture.