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Freezing Rain Leaves More than 56,000 Russians Without Electricity

An exterior view shows the monument of Soviet State founder Vladimir Lenin outside the Luzhniki Stadium in Moscow, Oct. 20, 2014.

More than 56,000 people were left without electricity when freezing rain fell in the Chelyabinsk region, downing power lines and disabling substations, the local energy utility said.

The freezing rain and snowfalls just east of the Ural Mountains cut off power supplies to 100 towns for at least a day over the weekend, affecting more than 56,000 people, the regional power distributor Ural MRSK said in a statement.

The energy company had pledged to restore power supplies by the end of the weekend, but when night fell on Sunday, nearly 49 towns remained without power, according to updates by the company.

As hundreds of workers struggled to repair downed lines, "incessantly difficult weather conditions led to new technological breakdowns to be registered," the company said in a statement.

By Monday, power had been restored to "the majority of customers," the company said in a statement.

A total of 50 power lines, nine substations and 517 transformer substations were downed by freezing rains and snow, the company said.

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