Isolated in the snow. Report from Kirovsk, which became a prison for residents
7 June , 00:09
Society
Kirovsk is a rather paradise town in the Murmansk region, if you do not take into account environmental problems due to the Apatit mining and processing plant. Surrounded on three sides by the Khibiny, the city is one of the centers of skiing.

Along with neighboring Apatity, it was completely closed due to the pandemic regime.

The reason for the measure is called the initiative of big capital. The city began to judge those who do not wear masks in the streets and the tourism industry suffered damage. Novye Izvestia understands how today Kirovsk looks from the inside.

Kirovsk - people closed with snow

A subtle turn from the Kola federal highway leads to Apatity and Kirovsk. There are no lanterns here. The road passes through the taiga, a huge lake of Imandra flickers, and then the viscous smell of apatite concentrate that is added to mineral fertilizers strikes the nose. But there is no dead end from industrial zones and sleeping areas. Gornyatsky Kirovsk attracts tourists all year round. Especially a lot of them - skiers and snowboarders, in the winter season, from October to June. In summer and autumn, the Khibiny massif is filled with campers. This gives hundreds of residents 26 thousandth of Kirovsk earnings. Today, everything is not so in the city - except that there is still snow in it, the police have been controlling the entry since the beginning of April, not letting in nonresidents and those who do not have work permits.

“It was a test for our people,” says Andrei Mamay, a third-generation old-timer and local celebrity. He walks around the distant neighborhood with the Sami name Kukisvumchorr pleasing the Slavic ear. Mommy has been publicly voicing his not-so-comfortable opinion for years; he is not associated with the PhosAgro company dominating in the region and the managers from the Vologda region who came here. When Kirovsk suddenly announced complete self-isolation, the ski complexes, hotels and hostels were closed in March, and fines rained down on the street, Andrei continued to live as before, covering this in his blog.

“People in Kirovsk, after the experience, are afraid of their own shadow,” says Andrei Mamay. But, according to the northerner, his fellow countrymen are not afraid of infection at all. Khibinogorsk residents were allowed to leave the boring apartments and walk the streets, play sports in the parks. “When the governor canceled self-isolation on May 12, everyone who was sitting at home finally came out and ... wore masks. They were afraid of dismissals. They were told to wear masks. There is no alternative, ”says the interlocutor of Novye Izvestia. “Can you imagine, in Tirvas (sports and recreation complex), in the forest, when people were allowed to go in for sports, people even wear masks alone!” - he is amazed. As Mamai observes, the “muzzles” even put on yard drinkers: “The mask is already a status”.

Masks are a new trend in Kirovsk. Recently, Andrei Mamay responded to the proposal to make a visor on the arch for the warehouse. “It turns out some miracle and yells that I put on a mask, otherwise they will have problems with the customer of the object because of this. I turned around. They ran after me, asked me to do it. True, they didn’t pay the money”, - he laughs.

Masks under pain of dismissal?

Kirovsk and Apatity are the only cities in the region in which electronic passes were formally introduced. Closing of cities followed after demand PhosAgro mining company https://bloger51.com/2020/03/75468 . If in Murmansk, according to Yandex, there was one of the lowest self-isolation ratings in the country, then in Kirovsk the masses of citizens, according to Novye Izvestia, were afraid to stick their nose out into the street. Literally. “There is an electrician, let's say Pupkin. He was taken to the reserve at the plant - no need to go to work. He is paid money. At home, an electrician has a bunch of children and a wife with a headache. And he was told at the plant that one should not leave the house. Generally. Or get fired. Wife and children should not go out either. They will bring food. And they were sitting, ”says Andrei Mamay. Once upon a time, he himself went to the factory entrance every day.

According to a source from Novye Izvestia, some residents of Kirov were promised trouble even because their family members did not wear masks on the street. The very use of which outdoors, we note, causes discussions among physicians, and the use of asthmatics is akin to torture. “Some of the “combine” were allowed to leave the apartments 100 meters from the house. But at the same time, God forbid! “If his wife comes out without a mask, the worker will be jammed”, Mamay assures. And he continues: “It seemed who in Kirovsk knew some electrician Pupkin and his wife? But no, with us people all know: “Ah, yes this is Pupkin’s wife. Come on”. And they knocked”.

“So, they threaten sanctions for not wearing masks outside the territory of the enterprise by the employees themselves, as well as by members of their families,” the northerner is astounded. “The company, therefore, decided to establish a regime at the plant. People say that inside the organization they are frightened by nightmare fines: about fifty thousand, ”Andrei Mamay said referring to his sources. Even before the pandemic regime, the indigenous people of Kirovsk actively criticized the attitude towards personnel on the part of the company. Instead of old-timers, migrant workers — Belarusians and Kazakhstanis — flashed more and more often at the plant. “The city resembles a shift camp, especially the 25th km (Kukisvumchorr), where I live”, says Mamay. It is difficult to find a local manager in the Kirov administration.

You like potatoes, but live in the North - pay a fine

More than five hundred, almost one in one hundred, residents of Kirovsk and Apatity are persons involved in administrative cases under Article 20.6.1 of the Code of Administrative Offenses due to violation of self-isolation. Most of them are men. The Kirovites honestly told the patrols what they were doing, not trying to lie that they were going to the store. The miners were fined for a trip to the spring for clean water. This happened with Viktor Gukov. By the way, in the houses of Kirovsk tap water has a smell ... rotten eggs. Yulia Adalimova was punished with a ruble for a trip to the garage for potatoes http://kir--mrm.sudrf.ru/modules.php?name=sud_delo&srv_num=1&name_op=doc&number=61731171&delo_id=1500001&new=0&text_number=1. Judged for car repairs on the street, garage visits and visits to parents. And a spontaneous trip to the store without a route explanation sheet. One Kirov citizen was punished with a warning for ... actions not specified by the court. Only rare people said they did not consider themselves guilty. For example, Valentina Tsaplyga - she looked at relatives in Apatity. Guilty. Maria Popova told the police that she was tired of sitting at home and had lost 3,000 rubles.

And against this background, street brawlers escaped with sanctions of 600 rubles. And if you look through the court record-keeping, it seems that in Kirovsk suddenly antisocial elements were quieted down; almost all administrative courts go in cases related to the situation with Covid-19. Which is far from the case. Raging in the city is enough.

Today in Kirovsk protocols are drawn up for those who go out or go to the store without ... masks. In Murmansk, on the streets, clinging to the breathing holes is not required. But here it was considered that the wearing of “muzzles” was necessary. Such cases are crammed with the Kirov city court. “So, from the written explanations of Sergey Lvovich Orlov, it follows that he was in a public place, near the house, without a mask, because he had a wet mask and put it in his pocket, and subsequently forgot to put it on,” read the court’s website http : //kir--mrm.sudrf.ru/modules.php? name = sud_delo & srv_num = 1 & name_op = doc & number = 68753943 & delo_id = 1500001 & new = & text_number = 1 . Punished. In local publics, such as "Severe reality" , the primary sources nod that: "They say that in the combine they will dismiss those who will receive an administrator for the lack of a mask" https://vk.com/wall-68246638_92887.

The current situation in Kirovsk is paradoxical. It is impossible to talk about the revelry of Kovid-19 in the city. On June 5, 101 people fell ill, two women died (one was 85 years old, and the other was obese). Thousands of people lived as they used to, but some were unlucky, and they received fines, while others fused with masks or fulfilled a set of new-fangled requirements. “We had a fire. Firefighters arrived, put out, all without masks. And the police stood next to them, with masks, ”notes Andrey Mamay. “From the administration, to the roof on which I worked, the women with the commission came - all without masks,” he emphasizes. “This (masks) did not apply to builders and employees of the capital repair fund,” says Andrei Mamay. And according to him, at Oleniy Ruchey Mining and processing plant, already owned by another company: “In the midst of everything, hundreds of migrant workers arrived. What masks are there! It started there later”.

“Children suffered the most from self-isolation”

Kirovsk is not only an industrial city. The surrounding slopes of the Khibin are full of skiers or snowboarders in the long polar winter. Some of them crawl away from prepared tracks; while riding, they cause avalanches and die. The ski resorts of Kukisvumchorr and BigWood are visited by thousands of visitors, and it is difficult to find a bed in hotels and hostels during the season. The winter stream fed hundreds of instructors, landlords and a layer of medium-sized businesses. On the 20th of March this came to an end. “At the same time, when we were informed about Wuhan, crowds of Chinese wandered. On Kukisvumchorre I hugged and took pictures with them, ”the man is amazed. Andrei Mamay so evaluates what happened: “I think that there was no point in closing (the resorts). But BigWood belongs to PhosAgro, so the slopes were closed. And the governor’s orders were, and violating them was more expensive for himself. We are not Sweden and Norway”. Alpine skiing trainers, who quietly protested against the pogrom of the slopes, were advised to do fitness at home.

However, people continued to ride, including visitors, those who chose to stay in the town. Skiers guerrilla before removal of self-isolation and are active in June, the benefit of the winter in Khibiny was excellent. “Whoever did this“ before”, he also continued to do “this ”during the“ plague”, ”says Andrei, master of sports. Together with his family, including his newborn son, he went down the slopes, making his way along snowmobile paths with a baby carriage mounted on skis, and risking getting back to Kirovsk to catch the police and go to court. Living in the Arctic requires huge resources from a developed human body, and to stay at home means to undermine health. Especially when in April-May daylight increases and the sun warms.

“The prohibition of walking in the city park and the closure of the ski stadium, I consider ridiculous and delusional,” the northern old-timer admonishes. “Children suffered the most from“ self-isolation ”in Kirovsk,” the active skier said. “But the idiots, which I consider a significant part of the population of our town, did not affect in any way: they always sat at home - this is the norm for them,” Andrei says severely ironically. “What is happening (the policy of self-isolation) was a test for the people - for meanness. In general, after work we will walk away from everything that happens in the mountains”, - summarizes Andrey Mamay.

Today, in the highest mountain town in the Kirovsk region, the sun accelerates the snowy sea. Kovid-19 did not become a devastating disease for the Murmansk region. Hotels and recreation centers in the vicinity of Khibin do not accept guests. Murmansk residents have already directly asked the governor the question - when will they be opened? Thousands of people from all over the country are waiting for the day to get to Khibiny, and the local tourism industry is working. However, Kirovsk remains locked.

Photo by Andrey Mamay

Text Mikhail Pustovoy