Terror on Elm Street in Kazakhstan?

#1
A story that makes one think of the old horror movie Terror on Elm Street - minus Freddy Krueger.

WTH is going on???


“We’re all afraid of falling asleep” villager Tatyana Pavlenko says.



The village that fell asleep: - mystery illness perplexes Kazakh scientists

One day last summer, Viktor Kazachenko set off across the steppe from his village in northern Kazakhstan. He was driving to the nearest town on some errands, but he never arrived.
“My brain switched off,” he says. “That’s it. I don’t remember.” Kazachenko had been hit by the so-called “sleeping sickness” that is plaguing Kalachi, a remote village about 300 miles west of the country’s capital Astana.
The mysterious illness has sent residents into comas, sometimes lasting days on end. “I was going to town on 28 August ,” Kazachenko said, still disoriented by the experience. “I came round on 2 September. I understood [on waking up] in the hospital that I’d fallen asleep.”

Kazachenko blacked out while driving his motorcycle, with his wife riding with him. “It’s good it wasn’t that foreign vehicle,” he jokes, gesturing at his car standing beside his neat white cottage. “That’s fast – a motorbike isn’t so fast!”. He didn’t complain of any other injuries as a result of his sudden sleep.

The motorcycle incident was his second journey in to the land of nod – “the first time I slept for three days,” Kazachenko says, laughing. He maintains a sense of humour about his predicament but it has had serious health implications.

“After this slumber, my blood pressure started going up for no reason,” Kazachenko explained. “Headaches – that’s not the word. For six weeks, I didn’t know where to put myself. It strongly affects your mentality. I’m very on edge.”

For two years, residents have been falling into comas and suffering debilitating symptoms – dizziness, nausea, blinding headaches and memory loss – as a result.

The ailment first struck in the village in the spring of 2013 and has affected over 120 residents – around a quarter of Kalachi’s population. The latest two incidents – which hit on 1 March – have increased the total number of cases to 152. Some, like Kazachenko, have been struck more than once.

On the president’s ‘personal radar’
The ‘sleeping sickness’ is baffling doctors and scientists alike who have tested increased levels of radiation; carbon monoxide; radon and a build up of heavy metal salts which can be toxic.

Scientists say radiation is within permissible levels, as is the concentration of heavy metal salts. Elevated levels of radon and carbon monoxide were detected but later ruled out as a cause.

In January Sergey Lukashenko, the director of the National Nuclear Centre’s institute for radiation security, acknowledged that some of houses of the affected residents had carbon monoxide levels that were ten times higher than recommended. This he said, could have caused similar symptoms to the “sleeping sickness”.

Kazakhstan’s government has said the village is on the “personal radar” of president Nursultan Nazarbayev, and prime minister Karim Masimov has set up a commission to coordinate the research: by the end of last year over 20,000 laboratory and clinical test had been conducted – on the air, soil, water, food, animals, building materials, and on the residents themselves. The tests are ongoing.

Doctors are equally mystified. Sleepy patients have been sent to hospitals in the capital Astana for tests but to no avail, and the Kazakh agency Tengrinews reported that deputy prime minister Berdibek Saparbaev had turned to the international medical community for support.


Other local reports speculated that scientists from the Centre for Disease Control and Prevention in America had sent specialists in to the area. The centre did not reply to a request to confirm if this was the case.


Residents suspect uranium mine

In the absence of hard scientific facts, many residents are convinced they know the source of the problem: the disused Soviet-era uranium mine on the village’s doorstep.


“We’ve been thinking it was radiation,” says Tatyana Shumilina. “We have a uranium mine here,” although it has been “a ruin for years.”


We are all in fear of falling asleep


The Krasnogorskiy mine, attached to the village of Kalachi, was once home to the miners dispatched from Russia and across the Soviet Union to extract uranium – used to power Soviet nuclear weapons and energy plants.


Krasnogorskiy is now a ghost site, gradually abandoned after the mine closed in the 1990s. Today only several dozen families remain, their homes intact but interspersed amongst desolate apartment blocks collapsing into the soil. But none of these families are thought to have been hit by the sickness, and there are no reports of the miners suffering a similar fate during Soviet times.


‘Voluntary resettlements’


“On this sleeping sickness, we don’t have the results of the studies in our hands yet,” Asel Sadvokasova, Kalachi’s mayor, acknowledged. As soon as there are conclusive findings, residents will be informed, she said.


Meanwhile, “we’re all in fear of falling asleep,” villager Tatyana Pavlenko says.
Authorities in the regions are now opting for a radical, and controversial, solution: moving the villagers out of Kalachi to prevent further exposure. In January, regional governor Sergey Kulagin said he hoped the relocation would be complete by May.


“Some measures must be taken,” the mayor, who has herself suffered a bout of the sickness, said. “This is a good chance for the residents of our village to find a new home and a new job.”


Working with local administrations and employers, authorities have already resettled around 100 residents across the Akmola Region – a 56,500-square-mile administrative area of northern Kazakhstan. But there are 425 residents still living in the village.


It is a “voluntary resettlement” Sadvokasova insists – but some villagers are resistant.

“I’m not going anywhere,” says Kazachenko. “Why should I go? I’ve been here for 40 years. I’m going to die here.”

His wife Raisa, who nursed him through two bouts of sleeping sickness is also defiant: “I’ve lived in this house for 20 years. I’ve lived on this street for 60 years,” she said , between hauling water from a standpipe through the icy streets on a sledge. “Now where will they send me? What’s awaiting me there?”

Mayor Sadvokasova acknowledges that some families don’t want to move: “For now we’re working with the families that want to resettle. It’s all on a voluntary basis.”


The authorities are “open to dialogue,” she added. In December, officials visited every home to talk to residents about their needs. They have promised that all services from schools to hospitals will be operational until the last villager agrees to leave.


Some villagers have expressed a preference for compensation but many remain opposed to leaving the place where they grew up. “They say it affects the brain; they say it gives people headaches,” Raisa Kazachenko said, “but our headache now is where we’re being resettled.”

http://www.theguardian.com/world/2015/mar/18/kazakhstan-sleeping-village-mystery

More of the story;


The villagers of Kalachi in northern Kazakhstan are sporadically falling into a deep sleep - and no one knows why.

People suffering from the strange "sleeping sickness" fall unconscious almost instantly and cannot be woken for days. Many are unable to recall their time asleep, although some report terrifying nightmares.

Doctors and scientists flown in to the remote village - nicknamed Sleepy Hollow - are puzzled as to what may have caused more than 100 of the town's inhabitants to suddenly fall asleep.

The strange syndrome has been afflicting the village for a year and researchers are still no closer to an answer.

It was originally thought to be caused by Kalachi's close proximity to an old Russian uranium mine or leaking Radon gas, but tests have proven inconclusive.

Water, soil, blood, hair and even local vodka were tested for signs of a possible cause.

Saule Agymbayeva, the deputy head of the Esil District of Kazakhstan, said more than half of the town's 582 residents planned to relocate in an attempt to escape the mystery sickness, which has affected several citizens multiple times.

Some doctors suggest mass psychosis may be at the root of the phenomenon, but the case continues to baffle scientists.

It is even believed the villagers may have accidentally buried an elderly resident alive before the sickness was diagnosed.

http://www.huffingtonpost.co.uk/201...ng-sickness-illness-kazakhstan_n_6947208.html
...................................................................................

Residents of a Kazakh village are being relocated because they keep being struck down with a mystery sleeping illness, it's been reported.

Villagers in Kalachi, northern Kazakhstan, have been suffering from the unexplained condition for about two years. It causes people to fall asleep suddenly, sometimes for several days, and those affected have also complained of memory loss and in some cases hallucinations. More than 100 cases have been reported in the village, which has been nicknamed "Sleepy Hollow", and some people have been affected more than once. Now the heads of neighbouring districts are offering to move the villagers to new homes and jobs elsewhere, the Interfax news agency reports. Priority is being given to the families who have children in the village, the deputy head of Esil district, Saule Agymbayeva, tells the agency. More than half of the village's 582 residents plan to relocate, the report says.

The illness has affected both adults and children. "If you try to wake him, it seems he wants to open his eyes, but can't. He just sleeps and sleeps," Igor Samusenko, whose son was affected by the condition, told Russia Today in December. Doctors haven't been able to work out what's causing the illness, although some have suggested mass psychosis. Other people think the village's location close to a former uranium mine, which closed more than two decades ago, could be behind it, although no abnormal readings have been found in samples of the village's water of soil, the TV channel says.

http://www.bbc.com/news/blogs-news-from-elsewhere-30709661
 
#2
Maybe the Russians , Americans or Chinese wanted to conduct experiments on some virus at the expense of Kazakhstan, who knows?
 
#3
Maybe the Russians , Americans or Chinese wanted to conduct experiments on some virus at the expense of Kazakhstan, who knows?
Regardless, it is a bona fide mystery. And who doesn't love a mystery?
The question is; will it be a short one, or a long one? Like the flowers and vegetation catching fire in The Fires of Canneto di Caronia. We don't have scientists running their legs off to explain that phenomenon

Some batches of the swine-flu vaccine caused narcolepsy for some kids, and youngsters - but this is something different I think. Have to keep my eye on this story.
 
Last edited:
#4
Regardless, it is a bona fide mystery. And who doesn't love a mystery?
The question is; will it be a short one, or a long one? Like the flowers and vegetation catching fire in The Fires of Canneto di Caronia. We don't have scientists running their legs of to explain that phenomenon

Some batches of the swine-flu vaccine caused narcolepsy for some kids, and youngsters - but this is something different I think. Have to keep my eye on this story.
Indeed.That's a challenge to science too, thanks to which it can progress.
But then again , science can't explain "everything" , let alone that it can enable us to know everything there is to know out there or within, regardless of whether or not scientists would be able to solve that mystery.
I thought first that it was an April fools' day hoax. lol
Cheers.
 
#5
Regardless, it is a bona fide mystery. And who doesn't love a mystery?
The question is; will it be a short one, or a long one? Like the flowers and vegetation catching fire in The Fires of Canneto di Caronia. We don't have scientists running their legs of to explain that phenomenon

Some batches of the swine-flu vaccine caused narcolepsy for some kids, and youngsters - but this is something different I think. Have to keep my eye on this story.
Was there any recent vaccination campaign in this village?
 
Top