A week before the next anniversary of the tragedy at the Dyatlov Pass, experts published new facts and versions of what happened to a group of tourists in 1959. The prosecutor's office, after checking in 2020, found that the tourists died as a result of an avalanche. However, the researchers admit that an unsuccessful launch of a cruise missile could be to blame: a fog of nitric acid reached the tent of UPI students. In addition, eyewitnesses reported a mysterious moving "ball of fire", the nature of which has not been established.
The tragedy at the Dyatlov Pass occurred on February 2, 1959. Nine tourists from the Ural Polytechnic Institute (UPI), led by Igor Dyatlov, went on a sixteen-day hike to overcome more than 350 km on skis and climb the Otorten and Oiko-Chakur mountains. However, at the appointed time, they did not get in touch. The search operation began on February 20. The bodies of tourists in their underwear were found near the torn tent. On February 26, 1959, a criminal case was initiated, during the investigation of which it was established that the tent was left suddenly and simultaneously by all the tourists. There were no bodily injuries and signs of a struggle on the corpses, all valuables remained intact.
On May 28, 1959, the criminal case was dismissed for lack of corpus delicti. The investigation concluded that the cause of death of tourists was the elements.
However, over the following decades, experts tried to establish the "true" cause of the tragedy. In 2019, employees of the Office of the Prosecutor General in the Ural Federal District initiated a new check, establishing that the Dyatlovites died from the effects of an avalanche. They were forced to urgently retreat 50 meters from the tent, but due to poor visibility, they could not return and froze.
Relatives of the victims did not agree with this version, insisting that the cause of death was a man-made disaster during the launch of the rocket. They are insisted on the initiation of a criminal case under paragraph. "a" h. 2 Article. 105 (premeditated murder of two or more persons).
On January 25, 2023, during a press conference, experts studying the tragedy at the Dyatlov Pass published new circumstances of the incident, which, in their opinion, can serve as confirmation of the rocket version. A participant in search work in 1959, a leading researcher at VNIIMT, Vladislav Karelin, said that in studying the causes of the tragedy, the results of an analysis of meteorological conditions on February 2, 1959, carried out as part of a prosecutor's check, were used. So, it was found that on that day frosts were kept in the pass area, which can confirm both the version with an avalanche and other theories presented by experts earlier.
However, according to Mr. Karelin, a mistake was made in the examination.
So, in the results of the analysis it was indicated that in the north-east of Mount Kholatchakhl the snow reached a height of 2.5 m, which confirms the version with an avalanche. However, Mr. Karelin himself, during the search for the Dyatlov group, did not notice the result of heavy rainfall - “stones stuck out” on the prison.
Vladislav Karelin said that on February 17, his search team saw a flying "fireball" in the area of the Dyatlov Pass, which was moving from east to west. This object was later noticed in other places, but then the witnesses claimed that the “ball” was moving from south to north.
“Some unidentified object flew from south to north, and then it changed direction and flew from east to west. Only some kind of winged unidentified object could change the trajectory of movement,” Vladislav Karelin emphasized.
He noted that this is a “completely new established fact”, on the basis of which it is possible to raise the issue of initiating a new criminal case.
The researcher of the causes of the death of the Dyatlov group, Vadim Skibinsky, suggested that the observed “fireballs” could be the exhaust gases of a launched rocket, which in the high layers of the atmosphere take the form of a ball, and due to the reflection of the Sun, they begin to glow, forming the “moon effect”. He also admits that the rocket launch could have been the cause of the tragedy.
The theory of Mr. Skibinsky is based on the testimonies of witnesses who claimed that the tracks of the students began from 10 m to 50 m (according to various estimates) from the tent, which they had to urgently leave. This is due to the fact that the snow around the tent was flooded.
However, the cause of the natural phenomenon was not the high temperature, because then the snow would have melted equally everywhere. The expert suggested that the snow had a chemical effect, while the required amount of “chemistry” could only be transferred by R-12 missiles (liquid single-stage medium-range ballistic missile) and Burya (the world's first supersonic two-stage ground-based intercontinental cruise missile). “There were no documents about the tests of the Storm. This means that only R-12 remains, ”concluded the researcher. In the event of an unsuccessful rocket launch, nitric acid could be released, forming a mist that could reach the tent.
Vadim Skibinsky added that in January-February 1959, six rockets were launched from the village of Polyarny in the Yamal-Nenets Autonomous Okrug, but there is no documentary evidence that any of them were unsuccessful. In Polyarny, according to unofficial information, missiles were tested, including R-12. The distance to the Sverdlovsk region is about 1 thousand km. According to the expert, the rocket could fly over the pass.
Oleg Arkhipov, chairman of the board of the interregional public organization "Society for the Memory of the Igor Dyatlov Group", said that forensic expert Boris Vozrozhdenny worked with the bodies of the dead, who drew attention to the fact that the regional prosecutor personally came to the autopsy, which usually does not happen in such cases. “It is known that the morgue was cordoned off during the autopsy of the first five, the orderlies were not even allowed there,” the expert noted. He added that allegedly fragments of the internal organs of the Dyatlovites were then seized by representatives of the KGB.