February 13, 1934The Soviet steamship Cheliuskin sinks in the Arctic Ocean.
was a Soviet steamship reinforced to navigate through polar ice that became ice-bound in Arctic waters during navigation along the Northern Maritime Route from Murmansk to Vladivostok. The expedition's task was to determine the possibility to travel by non-icebreaker through the Northern Maritime Route in a single navigation season. After leaving Murmansk on August 2, 1933, the steamship managed to get through most of the Northern Route before it was caught in the ice fields in September. After that it drifted in the ice pack before sinking on February 13, 1934, crushed by the icepacks near Kolyuchin Island in the Chukchi Sea. The crew managed to escape onto the ice and built a makeshift airstrip using only a few spades, ice shovels and two crowbars. They had to rebuild the airstrip thirteen times, until they were rescued in April of the same year and flown to the village of Vankarem on the coast of the sea. From there, some of the Chelyuskintsy were flown further to the village of Uelen, while fifty-three men walked over 300 miles to get there.