Fans of extreme tourism sometimes perish in Baikal area

Trips by fans of extreme tourism along rivers in the Lake Baikal area in Siberia sometimes end tragically. The body of one "survivalist", Nikolai Mukharev, 22, from Moscow, has been identified today by his co-travelers in the city of Baikalsk, Irkutsk region.

The RIA Novosti correspondent quotes Alexander Stepanov, chief of the Baikal search-and-rescue team of the Russian Emergencies Ministry, as saying that one of the two catamarans, which took the group from Moscow down the Snezhnaya river flowing to Lake Baikal, had rolled over and one traveller smashed on the rocks.

A similar case happened to a group of Polish fans of extreme sports on the Oka river in the Ziminsky district. Only four of the five tourists survived when their pontoon overturned. Rescuers are looking for Mihal Parus, 28, of Poland.

"The Russian Emergencies Ministry voices great dissatisfaction with fans of extreme tourism and the travel agencies, which arrange it. With rare exception, they do not get registered with our service, agree on communication and seldom make out insurance papers. This is one of the main reasons for tragedies", Stepanov said.

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