Support The Moscow Times!

Russian City Vows to Poison Fountain to Deter Revelers

Would-be frolickers are to be sternly warned off paddling in the fountains by signs, alerting them to the new dangers of dipping.

Authorities in a Moscow region city are so sick of local residents swimming in the central square's fountain that they have decided to poison it as a deterrent.

Residents of Zhukovsky, a city known for its science and technology institutes 40 kilometers southeast of Moscow, have been cooling off in the fountain as temperatures have shot well over 20 degrees Celsius this month, the city's administration said in an online statement.

As well as taking a dip themselves, people have also been known to bathe their dogs in the fountain, the statement said.

The authorities, blasting such behavior as "inappropriate," have responded by stating their intent to introduce a chemical reagent into the water that the statement said would render it "effectively poisonous."

Would-be frolickers are to be sternly warned off by signs posted around their erstwhile site of transgression, alerting them to the new dangers of dipping.

The decision has made a splash amongst the city's residents, who are unhappy about the new arrangement, according to Russian media reports.

The statement on the city's website was available Friday morning before being abruptly taken down without explanation by mid-afternoon.

Read more

Independent journalism isn’t dead. You can help keep it alive.

As the only remaining independent, English-language news source reporting from Russia, The Moscow Times plays a critical role in connecting Russia to the world.

Editorial decisions are made entirely by journalists in our newsroom, who adhere to the highest ethical standards. We fearlessly cover issues that are often considered off-limits or taboo in Russia, from domestic violence and LGBT issues to the climate crisis and a secretive nuclear blast that exposed unknowing doctors to radiation.

As we approach the holiday season, please consider making a one-time donation — or better still a recurring donation — to The Moscow Times to help us continue producing vital, high-quality journalism about the world’s largest country.