The Times-Tribune

Alcohol death toll in city rises to 49


The death toll from alcohol poisoning in a Siberian city has risen to at least 49 Monday after the victims consumed a counterfei­t bath lotion containing deadly methanol.

Local officials in Irkutsk went house-to-house in search for more victims and introduced a state of emergency Monday, while the Russian government called for tighter regulation of the alcohol market.

The sale of lotions and tinctures containing alcohol has risen in recent years as Russia has plunged into recession under the impact of Western sanctions and a slide in oil prices. Poisonings caused by cheap surrogate alcohol are a regular occurrence, but the Irkutsk case was unpreceden­ted in its scale.

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