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“Thank you, Grandpa! There’s light!”: Energy workers try to keep Ukraine’s lights on


In the Ukrainian city of Chernihiv, power outages have been commonplace since the start of the war, when it was besieged by Russian troops for more than a month.

Now across the country, blackouts have become a daily occurrence as Russian forces target civilian energy infrastructure – a tactic Kyiv has described as “the weaponry of winter”. And as temperatures drop, Ukrainian rescue workers have been tasked with the sometimes daunting ordeal of turning the country’s lights back on.

This is a task that can sometimes be dangerous. Energy company DTEK, which works closely with Ukrainian energy company NEC Ukrenergo, says more than 106 employees have been killed since the start of the war.

But according to Anatolii Lavrenko, an energy worker in Chernikov, his work is worth it, even if he can only turn on the lights for a few minutes.

“Even when it was for five minutes, it was okay,” he said. “Maybe someone charged their phone. I came home one day and my grandson was there.

“War or no war, he needed the phone. And he’s like, ‘Grandpa!’ then he jumps into my arms and says, “Thank you, grandfather!” There is a light!’. And two minutes later, it turns off. It brought tears to my eyes.”

Watch the Euronews report in the video player above to learn more about his story.

euronews Gt

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