Один из коридоров защитного подземного сооружения
Photo 09: One of the corridors of the protective underground structure.


I've never seen a bomb shelter like this before. Found the underground hospital.

Note! The photos are numbered according to the trajectory of my dungeon wandering and may be out of order in the article.


Lately I’ve been doing a lot of things that aren’t really part of my daily life, which has contributed to me spending a lot of time traveling, routes I haven’t taken before and areas I haven’t explored in detail before. Every day I would change my route a little bit to learn more about the location I had to travel to on business and every day I would see something interesting.

One day I was walking through the hospital complex and noticed an old ventilation shaft head – I immediately realized that it was a civil protection shelter or an old bomb shelter. I thought, “Now I know where I can hide during an air raid,” and went on with my business.

While I was doing my business, my curiosity kept me busy, wondering if I could get in there.
I always carry my smartphone and flashlight with me, and I don’t need more than that, so I’m always ready for adventure, as long as the shelter is open and not flooded.

I had been with Vasilevsky in hospital bomb shelters before – so I expected something similar. Nevertheless, the condition of the facility and its purpose were still unknown to me, but I was in for a pleasant surprise.

Available shelters - general information

Before I show the object, it is worth mentioning the following.

It’s no secret that in wartime, when a hostile neighbor is constantly shelling residential neighborhoods and critical infrastructure – almost all more or less usable shelters have been cleared of debris and opened to citizens. That is, most of the bombshells that urbex researchers dreamed of getting into are now open access.

This opportunity is like a coin – it has two sides. On one side:

  • for the citizens – everyone has the opportunity to take shelter during shelling and in this way it is possible to save their lives;
  • for the homeless – open shelters have become home;
  • for explorers – it is finally possible to visit most of the desired sites that were previously closed.

On the other hand:

  • for city residents – long-term stay in formerly abandoned shelters, which for decades have been a hotbed of mold and fungi, can worsen the health of people with weak immune systems and susceptible to respiratory diseases;
  • homeless people littering and pooping in shelters again, rendering them unusable for their primary function;
  • for researchers, the accessibility of the site loses its stalkerish romanticism.

Quickly erected modular shelters, which I made a video review of in Dnipro, have become more convenient for the urban environment. There will be those who will say that such shelters are not reliable. This statement is partially true – they only protect against shrapnel damage.

But it is true that most buried capital shelters can also be hit by a direct hit from modern weapons. As proof, a military friend of mine showed me a video he shot on his smartphone while his unit was clearing an underground command post in the recaptured territories. A deep and fortified underground military facility was hit by a ballistic missile that simply penetrated its defenses deep underground – and as a consequence, command equipment was destroyed and soldiers were killed.

So if you have the opportunity – hide in the lower vestibules of subway stations, it will be almost an ideal hiding place in terms of safety.

From what I have written in this chapter it is clear that all shelters have their disadvantages. True, the enemy does not set the task to spend modern expensive weapons on ordinary civilian shelters. Therefore, any shelter, nevertheless, can save your life. Therefore, do not neglect your life and make your way to the nearest shelter in case of danger.

The safety rules for civil protection were developed many decades ago and have not changed much – so if you are interested, you can read them in my article “Everyone should know about this“. And I wrote about the condition in which civilian shelters should be maintained in my article “Something about German civil protection facilities“.

Descent to the dungeons. Entrance group of rooms

So, having done all my business, I hurried to the bombery.

The first thing that surprised me was that there was no protective ground embankment above the freestanding shelter, because most bomb shelters deepened by 3-4 meters have such a thing. On the surface there was partly a parking lot and some kind of construction warehouse. Then I thought that the earth mound was removed to free the area for household needs. That is, from the outside it is not clear at all neither the scale of the object nor its suitability.

I examined one entrance – for some reason it was tied with steel wire, I came to another entrance – it was propped up with a stone, so I decided to go in here (and I found out about the third potential entrance when I had explored the entire underground space). I decided not to push my luck and waited for a while until no one was watching me enter the shelter not during the alarm.

Над входами надстроены сараи для защиты от осадков и чтобы казалось, что это хозяйственные постройки
Photo 01: Sheds have been added over the entrances for protection from precipitation and to make them appear to be outbuildings
Это укрытие кажется глубже стандартных бомбоубежищ.
Photo 02: This shelter appears to be deeper than standard bomb shelters

I went in, closed the door behind me, waited at the entrance for a few minutes, and listened. After making sure that no one followed me, I took out my flashlight and phone and started to go deeper down the long narrow staircase. Then I realized for the first time that this storage facility is several meters deeper than most typical ones, which explains why there is no protective embankment on the surface (but a sufficient amount of soil is present and formed by the nature of the existing landscape), and in general, you will not immediately notice this object on the territory, and even more so from the air.

As they went deeper, the temperature dropped significantly and the air became more humid. At the bottom of the stairs it was dry and clean, as if someone had cleaned the place, and the walls looked as if they had been recently painted. In the corridor closest to the exit, a bio-toilet had been installed – this is the first time I have seen such a thing, but if the sanitary facilities and communications of the facility are not usable, it is a quick and effective solution. These are all signs that this shelter, since the start of the full-scale invasion, has been brought to a usable condition. So I’m in for an interesting challenge.

Part of the entrance group was a distribution room, where there was a huge cross-sectional ventilation pipe, on which patriotic inscriptions “PTH-PNH” and “RUS CAR NA…” were displayed – I don’t need to explain, I think it’s clear enough.

There are two ways out of the distribution room – into the utility room and into a long corridor. I went to the utility room. At first I thought that it had a technical purpose, because it was obviously not cleaned, but then I realized that it was probably a storage room. What is interesting – this room differs in height from the main structures of the shelter and has a vestibule, which once had reinforced doors – the impression that these rooms were added to the storage later. In favor of this version spoke also a large number of tree roots, which sprouted inside this space in search of moisture.

Стрелками показано направление эвакуации из помещений.
Photo 03: The arrows show the direction of evacuation from the premises
Биотуалет в бомбоубежище
Photo 04: For the first time in my life I've seen a bio-toilet in a bomber. I wonder how it was dragged here through the narrow passageways? Probably it was brought in disassembled and assembled already here
Распределительное помещение с огромной, расписанной вентухой
Photo 5: Distribution room with a huge, painted ventilator
Под стеной аккуратно сложены паллеты, потом станет понятно, что они здесь не случайно
Photo 6: Pallets are neatly stacked under the wall, it will become clear later that they are here for a reason
Первое большое подсобное помещение
Photo 7: The first large utility room
Тамбур к подсобке когда-то имел укрепленную дверь
Photo 8: The utility room vestibule once had reinforced doors - as if these rooms were separate from the main shelter

Inspection of the central premises

After examining the entrance group I entered a long corridor with a bunch of doors. The closest rooms were storerooms, and they were filled with construction debris. As I understood, those who were tidying up the shelter put all the garbage in bags and brought it to such small rooms for temporary storage. Naturally, I didn’t take pictures of these garbage heaps, because it’s not interesting. But at the beginning of this corridor there were several small ventilation rooms.

Длинный коридор с кучей дверей, вид от входной группы
Photo 10: Long corridor with lots of doors, view from the entryway
Длинный коридор с кучей дверей, вид от дальних помещений укрытия. Сфотографировал, когда вернулся
Photo 25: Long corridor with lots of doors, view from the far side of the shelter. Took a picture when I got back
Небольшая вентиляционная камера
Photo 11: Small ventilation chamber
Photo 12: A corroded valve in the ventilation system

Usually, when I explore unfamiliar rooms, to avoid missing something interesting, I follow the “right-hand rule” – I look first at rooms that are to the right of my direction of travel. So I didn’t go any further down the hallway, but instead wrapped around to the nearest doorway on the right. The first thing I saw was a table with a lot of water tanks on it, and then after walking a couple more steps I got into a long hall. Here I stopped because I was shocked by what I saw – along each wall were rows of carefully made beds (like in a barracks). What I saw stunned me, and at first I didn’t understand what exactly was going on here.

Amidst the silence, out of the darkness I heard sounds….. I thought at first that someone was living or hiding here. As I stood listening, I realized it was water dripping somewhere in the adjacent rooms. I looked closely at the bed and saw water and whitewash stains. I realized that everything here was being prepared in a hurry – so I cautiously moved further into the next room – and again saw a long room, a table with containers of water and rows of beds. Somewhere in the middle of the room something flickered – I looked closely, and it was a wheelchair, and my flashlight was shining a reflector on it.

And then the puzzle began to form in my head: hospital territory + beds + wheelchair = underground hospital (or something like that). I moved on – I see beds again. And a couple more rooms – same thing.

Photo 13: Didn't expect to see a hospital room in the dungeon
К сожалению, на некоторые кровати капает вода с потолка и на белье уже есть пятна от побелки и плесени
Photo 14: Unfortunately, some beds have water dripping from the ceiling and there are already whitewash and mold stains on the linens
В каждой палате есть запасы воды
Photo 15: Each room has water supplies and pallets are made into places to sit or for belongings
Кресло-каталка в одной из подземных палат
Photo 16: Wheelchair in one of the underground wards
Небольшая комната на две кровати – вероятно, это комната для отдыха персонала
Photo 17: A small room with two beds - presumably a staff rest room
Выглядит крепко – либо как палата в психиатрии, либо как келья монахов
Photo 18: It looks sturdy - either like a ward in psychiatry or a monks' cell

And the further I went through the premises, the more I became convinced that this was an underground hospital. I don’t understand how such conditions can meet sanitary standards for treatment, much less for medical procedures. It looks like the worst dream of a person wanting to get well. But it can save a life, even in such conditions. For some reason I remembered how for months the defenders of Azovstal took shelter and lived and were treated for injuries in such underground structures….

After inspecting the rooms in the middle and far part of the shelter, I went out into the corridor where I started the inspection. On the wall I noticed two printed sheets packed in cellophane files and glued to the wall – I read “Room for storing medicines”, “Manipulation room”. After that there should be no doubt – this is definitely an underground hospital, prepared for an emergency. I go in – there are several beds in the room, a table in the middle with some medicines on it, and several packs of disposable medical towels in the drawers under the table. I walked back down the long corridor to the entrance group. There were a couple of other similar rooms next to the manipulation room, but they had not been prepared properly.

Небольшой коридор вел в два помещения с кроватями
Photo 19: A small corridor led to two rooms with beds (in the following photos)
Это помещение еще не подготовлено для пребывания людей
Photo 20: This room is not yet prepared for human occupancy
Photo 21: I wonder - is this a ward, or staff living quarters?
Больничный комплекс
Photo 22: I finally have confirmation that this is an underground "hospital complex"
Подземная манипуляционная и комната хранения медикаментов
Photo 23: Underground manipulation room and medication storage room.
Ржавый вентиляционный короб в манипуляционной коробке
Photo 24: Rusty ventilation box in the manipulation room
Это помещение тоже не подготовлено для пребывания людей
Photo 25: This room is also not prepared for human occupancy
Помещение «близнецов» двух предыдущих, но только старый линолеум с плесенью и мешки с мусором.
Photo 26: The room "twin" of the previous two, but here there is only old linoleum with mold and bags with garbage

Ventilation rooms

There were a couple more doors at the beginning of the corridor, which I hadn’t looked through yet.
That’s right – these are the technical rooms. One door leads to a small ventilation room, and the other door leads through several vestibules to another ventilation room. So the two chambers are next to each other, but they’re probably two different ventilation systems.

Sometimes bunkers may have up to several separate ventilation systems. Most often shelters are equipped with two systems: clean ventilation mode (air intake from the surface goes only through mechanical filters – indicated by white color), and filter ventilation mode (air is additionally passed through filter-absorbers – indicated by yellow color). At some requirements shelters can be retrofitted with air conditioning systems (cooling of hot air if fires are burning in the affected area – indicated in red color), but I have not seen such systems in person yet. Sometimes additionally may install an exhaust system for technical needs (or as a redundant system). Usually these systems are distinguished by the color of the ducts, but here all systems, apparently, painted not according to standards, and the paint that was available. So I’ll assume that here the small vents without vestibules are clean ventilation, and the vents with vestibules and airtight doors are filter-ventilation systems. Unfortunately, I never saw any of the filters – they are probably long since dismantled, like most of the system.

And I also noticed that in the common areas I see new electrical wiring and even modern LED bulbs have already been screwed in. And in the technical rooms were not even cleaned – that is, no one is going to restore the ventilation system here (it is not cheap), if the shelter will be used, then as far as I am concerned, there will be a lack of clean air here. And that’s a shame.

Гермодвери в одной из венткамер
Photo 28: Sealing doors in one of the ventilation chambers
Photo 29: Here is a large-section duct segment - exactly like the one I saw in the entrance area of the premises
Еще фрагмент (два колена) воздуховода
Photo 30: Another piece (two elbows) of the ducting
С этого ракурса видно сразу несколько тамбуров в венткамеру
Photo 31: From this angle, several vestibules to the ventilation chamber can be seen at once
Вентиляционный агрегат
Photo 32: Ventilation unit
Под потолком на вентиляции стоит воздушный клапан
Photo 33: There is an air damper under the ceiling on the ventilation system
Выпуск воздуховода
Photo 34: Duct outlet
Найдя план помещений удивился количеству помещений - впервые вижу такое укрытие
Photo 35: Finding the floor plan, I was surprised by the number of rooms - the first time I've seen such a shelter

In search of other premises

So I walked around most of the underground complex, but I had a feeling I hadn’t seen everything, so I’m going back to where I started. I went to the hospital wards again and from there I came to a corridor I had not yet been in. Here on the wall I found an evacuation plan for the rooms.

Looking at the plan, I realized two things:

  1. I have only seen two thirds of all the rooms and I still need to get into some corners of the underground complex;
  2. the plan on paper does not correspond to reality, because some doorways are already bricked up and I did not see entrances to some rooms.

But I will come back to the layout at the end of the article, and now I will show the rooms that I haven’t gotten into yet.
On the right side of the corridor there were two bathrooms, but their condition was not suitable for use – this explained the presence of a biotoilet near the entrance group.

In the center of the corridor was a passage to a group of rooms. In the nearest room there was a hospital cart (I googled its name – a medical transport gurney for the transportation of patients with removable stretchers “TPBS”), next to it there was a rack for drips and a wheelchair. It was a little creepy to see such a thing – like a scene from some thriller.

The far room was more like a warehouse and its construction was also different from the main rooms of the bunker.
To the left along the corridor there was another escape route from the shelter (the one where the doors were tied with steel wire on the surface), there was a small pantry with junk and a gas cylinder, further on there was a vestibule where an old chair was left. There was no need to go up the stairs – everything was closed there. But, unlike the entrance through which I got here, there was an air intake grate in the wall (so there are technical rooms somewhere nearby).

I went back from the second exit, to the right along the corridor I came to a group of rooms, some had beds, some were empty.

Тележки для транспортировки больных
Photo 36: Trolleys for patient transportation
На широкоугольную камеру это помещение выглядит еще более драматично
Photo 37: This room looks even more dramatic on the wide-angle camera
Вероятно это складские помещения аналогичны тем, что Фото 7
Photo 38: Presumably these are warehouses similar to those in Photo 7.
Небольшой амбар с хламом и баллоном
Photo 39: A small pantry with junk and a cylinder
Такой старый стул здесь стоит. Вероятно, он изготовлен в 1930-1940х годах. Но это укрытие не так старо, поэтому стул сюда просто принесли
Photo 40: This is the old chair standing here. Supposedly it was made in the 1930s and 1940s. But this shelter is not that old, so the chair was just brought here
Второй эвакуационный выход из укрытия
Photo 41: Second evacuation exit from the shelter
Через эту решетку вентиляционная система забирает воздух
Photo 42: The ventilation system draws air through this grille
Photo 43: There were several other small hospital rooms on the far side of the bomber house

Underground power plant

When I noticed the air intake in the escape duct, I realized that there were technical rooms somewhere else, so I went looking for them. First I came across a room with electrical cabinets, but they were empty – all the wiring and fittings had long since been stolen. There were also a couple of utility rooms and a vestibule through which I entered a huge ventilation chamber (it seemed so to me at first). But when I saw the remains of a diesel engine on the floor, I realized that it wasn’t just a ventilation chamber – it was the chamber of a diesel-generator power plant, and it looked pretty epic.

There was almost nothing left of the generator itself, just the frame and a six-cylinder engine block. I was unable to identify the engine, it was probably either from a truck or a large tractor.
There were also remnants of ventilation fittings, there was a tank hanging on the wall (presumably with oil), and the fuel tank was no longer there. At the far end of the chamber, the huge ventilation equipment was almost entirely preserved (except for the electric motor).

It is perhaps worth explaining how it all works. Since a powerful diesel engine must be cooled and emit an incredible amount of exhaust gases and heat, underground generator rooms are usually separated through a vestibule with airtight doors from the general space of the bomb shelter, so that the people in the shelter do not suffocate. The chamber is equipped with a powerful autonomous supply and exhaust ventilation system, which cools the room and the engine, and exhausts gases to the surface.

In the absence of an external power supply, such a power plant could provide electricity to this underground facility for days – even uninterrupted until it ran out of fuel.

Бывшие электрические шкафы – пустые
Photo 44: Former electrical cabinets - empty for now
Photo 45: The air in this chamber is circulated through these openings
Остатки воздуховодов, охлаждающих дизельный генератор
Photo 46: Remains of the air ducts that cooled the diesel generator
Блок дизельного двигателя – все, что осталось от генераторной установки
Photo 47: The diesel engine block is all that remains of the generator set
На одинаковом уровне от пола стены и оборудование загрязнены – это означает, что это помещение некоторое время было подтоплено
Photo 48: At the same level from the floor, the walls and equipment are dirty - this means this room has been waterlogged for some time
Мощная вытяжная система, чтобы осуществлять циркуляцию воздуха и отводить газы
Photo 49: Powerful exhaust system to circulate air and remove gases
«Улитка» вентиляционного оборудования – диаметр воздуховодов около 800 мм
Photo 50: "Snail" ventilation equipment - diameter of ducts about 800 mm
С другой стороны «улитка» должен быть электрический двигатель, но его разобрали воры на цветной металл
Photo 51: There was supposed to be an electric motor on the other side of the "snail" but it was dismantled by thieves for non-ferrous metal

Air conditioning system

Having examined the diesel generator room, I went to look at the rest of the rooms, because I saw a third escape route on the plan. But my attention was first attracted by air ducts that led to some rooms. Following the communications, I came to another ventilation room. Here on the floor there was a warehouse of construction waste and old ventilation pipes.

The ventilation unit itself consisted of a common area and three chambers – so I began to look into each one in turn:

  • The first chamber contained the ventilation equipment;
  • in the second chamber I saw something that looked like a flat filter, but on closer inspection I realized that it was a cooling radiator;
  • the third chamber turned out to be an air intake chamber (through which air is drawn into the system).

That is, I finally, for the first time in my life, saw an air conditioner built into the ventilation system of a bomb shelter. This is exactly the system I wrote about above – which can cool the air that comes in from outside. Judging by the “yellow” color of the ventilation system and air ducts (photo 53 and photo 54) – the air conditioning system is a part of the filter-ventilation system of this bunker.

Воздуховоды системы вентиляции
Photo 57: Air ducts of the ventilation system
Выпускной канал системы кондиционирования
Photo 52: Air conditioning system exhaust duct
Блок помещений системы кондиционирования
Photo 53: Air conditioning room block
Воздухозаборная камера системы кондиционирования
Photo 56: Air intake chamber of the air conditioning system
Вентиляционное оборудование
Photo 54: Ventilation equipment
Photo 55: Air cooling radiator

Final premises. Conclusions.

A few more rooms remain to be seen. A small distribution block with ventilation ducts, which also houses another bio-toilet. From this room you can access a storage room and a vestibule that leads to locked doors. For a long time I wandered around this hideout, and finally this is the last room. It is behind these blocked doors that is the third evacuation exit from this underground complex.

Not that this underground facility is huge, but I am excited about it, because I have not been in such facilities before. Of course, there are many questions about the readiness of such a shelter to receive patients. In some places there is mold in the rooms, not all rooms have new wiring and lighting, there is no running water, there are no full-fledged bathrooms, and the ventilation system is not functioning. But!

If the hospital were to be attacked by aerial bombardment, the nursing staff, the bedridden and the wounded would be moved here. I counted 32 beds set up, though not all of them are prepared for patients. And that will save many lives. With the modern capabilities of the emergency services and the lack of threat of occupation of the site where this hospital shelter is located – there will be no need to stay in this shelter for long.

Everything I saw was designed for a stay of only a few days – and I don’t think I need more than that. And God forbid that there should be any need to use this temporary shelter. That is why, for security reasons, I do not want to reveal the location of this underground hospital.

Старый выключатель освещения, который здесь установили еще во времена СССР
Photo 58: An antique light switch that was installed here during the Soviet era
Распределительное помещение при третьем эваководе
Photo 59: Distribution room at the third escape route
Тамбур перед эваководом. На проводе висит эвакуационный план
Photo 60: The vestibule in front of the evacuation exit. The evacuation plan is hanging on a wire
Photo 61: The third evacuation route is blocked, it will be difficult to get here

I was wondering in what years this shelter was built – for this purpose I looked through historical layers of satellite images on the service oldmaps.dp.ua. The only thing I managed to find out was that this object was built in the early 1970s (at least in 1975 the object was already ready).

While working on the article I decided to find out in which rooms I had taken the photos, for this purpose I started to scrutinize the plan, which is shown in photo 35. Trying to identify the shooting locations, it became clear that the layout on the plan has many differences from the real state of the shelter (I remembered that when I went there I saw bricked up doorways), and some rooms are not indicated on the plan at all (the diesel generator room). That’s why I revised the video I shot (I shot almost all the rooms there, except for a few rubbish-filled storage rooms and old bathrooms) to make a more correct version of the layout.

Actual layout diagram of an underground shelter I researched.


  • White sections – main rooms of the shelter;
  • Yellow sections – technical rooms;
  • Orange sections – storerooms and warehouses;
  • Blue sections – sanitary facilities (not operational);
  • Red crosses – rooms intended for medical needs;
  • Blue numbers – location of photo fixation points and photo numbers.

To me, this is not a typical construction. In addition, I found the consequences of remodeling and the addition of additional rooms to the main volume of the shelter. There is a possibility that the remodeling and additions were made in 1983, because on the satellite images of the site where the object is located I observe some differences. But then why does the layout in photo 35 have so many inaccuracies, why wasn’t it corrected? Probably it was taken from the original design without taking into account the changes, or worse – it was taken from an old BTI plan.

As for the capacity of this shelter. If according to the norms only 20% should be places for lying down (there are 32 of them here), then accordingly there should be plus 80% of sitting – it is 128 places for sitting. Then according to the calculation this shelter was prepared for 160 people (both patients and staff inclusive). But, I made calculations solely from the number of installed beds. Normative calculations are based on the area of the main rooms of the shelter – 0.6m² per person. Under the ground it is more difficult to navigate in space, but I will try to determine the approximate size of the object – according to my feelings the area of the shelter is about 24×36 meters (including attached rooms), it is more than 800 m². Of this, about 350 m² can be considered as the main rooms (auxiliary, technical and sanitary rooms are not taken into account) – 350×0,6=210 people – this is the maximum number of people who can stay in this shelter for several days.

And lastly. Unfortunately, I don’t often write big articles about object research, but I regularly make small posts in my Telegram channel “That Weissman“. Also, any sites I’ve been to, or my publications or videos can be discussed in a friendly chat room.

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