Russian Navy Officer Found Frozen to Death in His Home

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Relatives of a 60-year-old Russian Navy officer say that the serviceman was found frozen to death in his home near St. Petersburg due to power outages in the area.

The family members of the deceased officer, Vladislva Shevashkevich, told the Russian network 78.ru that his body was found by his brother-in-law in his home near Vyborg in the Leningrad region on January 3. Vyborg is located roughly 76 miles northwest of St. Petersburg, near the Finnish border.

According to the report, power interruptions began in the Vyborg district on December 29. At the time, energy companies had told residents that there was no electricity due to snow weighing on the electrical wires.

Shevashkevich’s brother-in-law told 78.ru that the family had last heard from him on January 1. Two days later, alongside a district police officer, relatives went to Shevashkevich’s home and broke down the front door, where he was found deceased.

Newsweek could not verify the report, and 78.ru said that an investigation into Shevashkevich’s death was ongoing. A request for comment was sent via email to the Kremlin’s press office.

Power outages have been reported in several cities across Russia in recent days, leaving thousands of residents without heat in subzero temperatures. Videos circulating online have shown Russian citizens resorting to gas stoves, heaters, and lighting fires outside to keep themselves warm. Such power outages were reported last week in Rostov, St. Petersburg, Volgograd, and Voronezh.

Roughly tens of thousands of power outages were reported in Moscow alone after a heating main burst at the Klimovsk Specialized Ammunition Plant on January 4, which led to Russian President Vladimir Putin calling for the nationalization of the facility located some 30 miles south of Russia’s capital. Power outages in St. Petersburg, Russia’s second-largest city, also led to the closing of two shopping malls on Sunday, reported 78.ru, and hundreds of homes were reported to have no electricity, water or heating for several days.

Power outages were also reported in Omsk on Wednesday, leaving almost half of the city in southcentral Russia without heating. The interruptions were reportedly due to an emergency shutdown at the Tavricheskaya substation, and local authorities said that power was restored for most residents within 30 minutes.

The freezing temperatures may prove to be a benefit for Russia’s troops fighting in Ukraine, however. The U.K. Defense Ministry said Thursday that Moscow’s chances of pushing forward along the frontlines may be boosted thanks to cold weather freezing the ground, making cross-country travels easier for tanks and armored vehicles.

Fishermen walk on the ice-covered Gulf of Finland in front of a warship during a snowfall in St. Petersburg on December 26, 2023. A Russian Navy officer was reportedly found frozen to death in his home near St. Petersburg due to power outages in the area.
OLGA MALTSEVA/AFP via Getty Images