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Russia's Far East City Replaces Burnt New Year's Tree

Local authorities in Russia's Far East have replaced a scorched New Year's tree which caught fire as revelers prepared to be among the first Russians to ring in 2018.

The 25-meter artificial tree on Yuzhno-Sakhalinsk’s Lenin Square was engulfed by flames after being hit by fireworks on New Year's Eve. Images of the column of flames quickly went viral on social media as the festivities' host urged bystanders not to panic and to “move closer."

City authorities said Tuesday that a new 12-meter tree had been moved to the site from a nearby park. 

Meanwhile, it was a near miss for a New Year’s tree in Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky after the figures of Father Frost and his Snow Maiden short-circuited. This time, however, a fire extinguisher and some snow were enough to put out the flames — but not before the figures had been reduced to ash.

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