A Russian student was rushed to hospital with poisoning after buying a bottle of drinking water which – unknown to her – contained lethal Covid-19 hand sanitiser.
Katya, 20, was poisoned at a cafe close to the Kremlin in central Moscow.
She took a sip of “mineral water” and spat out the mouthful of sanitiser but still required treatment in a top hospital for two days, according to reports.
The cafe chain, named Cofix, admitted to “negligence” in keeping the hand sanitiser in a Kalinov Rodnik brand water bottle which was then mistakenly sold to the student of Moscow State University.
“After taking a sip, she immediately spat it out, which was captured on CCTV cameras,” a statement from Cofix said.
Katya “remained conscious” after gulping the poison, according to the chain.
“We offer our deepest apologies to the victim," the statement said.
“The culpable employees of the coffee shop were punished and suspended from work.”
The student has refused an offer from the company to reimburse her medical expenses.
Sanitation watchdog Rospotrebnadzor reportedly found other violations of safety rules at the cafe in Okhotny Ryad mall which was reportedly temporarily closed by inspectors.
It will face a $8500 fine, according to reports, while a criminal investigation may follow.
The victim’s sister Olga made a formal complaint.
In November, five Russian children were orphaned after their mother died from drinking Covid-19 hand sanitiser at a party when guests ran out of alcohol.
Their father had perished earlier from poisoning at the same event.
The mother was the ninth victim of an illegal antiseptic hand wash supplied across the country.
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