Russians are flocking to local beaches to escape soaring temperatures in Moscow -- leading many, unintentionally, to their deaths.
Area lakes and ponds have been packed with groups and families, including some with small children, with a three-week heatwave sending temperatures up to 98.6 degrees Fahrenheit (37 degrees Celsius).
And now, officials say the heatwave has lead to a spike in drowning deaths in the Moscow vicinity. More than 1,200 people have died recently from drowning as they tried to escape the heat; between July 5 and 12, a total of 233 Russians were reported to have drowned -- the alleged result of carelessly swigging vodka before swimming. More than 1,200 people have died from drowning.
Last week, five children and a summer camp counselor drowned in southern Russia's Sea of Avov, while the other counselors who were supposed to be minding them were found to be drunk.
See video of the heatwave here: