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09.2010

Massachusetts Beverage Business

archivedAtPressTime

HEATWAVES, VODKA AND SWIMMING . . . NOT A GOOD MIX

Some things are just no brainers. Don’t play in traffic, stay off the golf course during a lightening storm, don’t swim when drunk . . . Apparently, many Russians have chosen to ignore that last one. A prolonged heat wave across their country combined with massive consumption of vodka led to well over a thousand drownings this summer as drunken swimmers attempted to cool off. More than 2OO people drowned in one week alone. Up to 95 percent of the drowning deaths were intoxicated males. The incidents mostly occurred away from supervised beaches, often in isolated ponds and lakes located near dachas – country houses where city-dwellers often go on weekends to relax and drink with family and friends. Two deaths occurred when two men who couldn’t swim got drunk and attempted to cross the Moscow River, which runs through the center of the Russian capital. They attached empty plastic bottles to their arms to help them float. It didn’t work and they drowned.

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