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Kyiv to test its underground shelter system in face of Russian threat

In the face of a growing threat of a full-scale Russian offensive, Kyiv is preparing for the possible need to hide its civilians from bombing and other emergency situations. There are 500 shelters and over 6,000 dual-use safe rooms where one can take refuge if necessary, wrote Radio Liberty.

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Some of these places are located in the basements of residential buildings. Others have become private property and may include, for example, a shop or a tattoo parlor.

“Currently, in many dual-purpose places there are shops, hairdressing salons, banks, etc. We informed the district administrations that in the event of an alert, when sirens sound in the city, doors are to be opened in such places so Kyiv residents could access them,” said Roman Tkachuk, director of the security department of the Kyiv City State Administration.

One can also hide in underpasses, in underground parking lots and in the subway if need be.

Currently, most of the shelters are closed so that unauthorised persons cannot access them unnecessarily and to prevent them from contamination. The authorities ensure that, in the event of an emergency, all of them will be made available to residents within the space of 15 minutes. Kyiv also claims that the shelters are undergoing regular maintenance.

Radio Liberty announced on Tuesday that the readiness of the warning system is to be checked during the planned test, of which the authorities will inform the Kyiv citizens beforehand.

Kyiv has published a map on the Internet where one can check the nearest place to hide in case of an emergency.

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