Three people have died in Moscow after a dry ice stunt to create a dramatic ‘visual effect’ went tragically wrong.
But things took a turn for the worse when a reported 25kg (55lbs) of dry ice was dumped into the pool to impress guests at the Devyaty Val (Ninth Wave) complex.
The dry ice began to melt, flooding the room with carbon dioxide. Partygoers jumped into the pool excited by the ‘smoky’ effect.
Guests immediately began to choke and fall unconscious. Three died and several more are in hospital.
Tragically, the influencer’s IT specialist husband, Valentin Didenko, was one of the three people who died.
The other two victims were party-goers Natalia Monakova and Yuri Alferov, both 25, who were confirmed dead at the scene.
It was reported that up to seven others needed hospital treatment, including Ekaterina.
Mum-of-two Ekaterina posted a distraught video message to social media after the accident, in which she said: “Valya [her husband] is not with us any more. Or Natasha [Natalia]. Or Yura [Yuri].
“I did not cry yesterday… today I just exploded. I thought it was not true, it was a nightmare.
“Nastya [her daughter] woke up today – ‘Where is daddy?’ I do not know what to say to her. She is asking me: ‘Why are you crying?'”
The Russian Investigative Committee confirmed a criminal case was opened, regarding a cause of death by negligence.
Dry ice can be lethal
Dry ice is a solid form of carbon dioxide (CO2) and it must be kept around -79C (-109F).
As the temperature rises, the dry ice melts and becomes a gas. This creates the ‘smokey’ visual effect that’s often used in theatres and the film industry.
Too much carbon dioxide can be deadly. As CO2 levels rise, the body receives less oxygen. A person will experience drowsiness, headaches and blurred vision until eventually falling unconscious.
If used and stored correctly, dry ice is harmless and fun. However, it must be used in a well-ventilated area and in small quantities.
According to reports, Valentin wanted the dry ice ‘to create an impressive steam show’ as party guests jumped into the pool.
But as soon as the ice was poured, people started fainting despite laughing and clinking glasses moments earlier.