Trips to Chernobyl: get to know what happened at the Chernobyl nuclear power plant

Any tourist planning to make trips to Pripyat in Ukraine is always curious about the exact reason for the accident with a complete explanation. In this article you can get acquainted with detailed information about the catastrophe.

Historical background

On the 25th of April, 1986, the fourth power unit was to be shut down experimentally at the Chernobyl NPP in order to study the possibilities of using the inertia of the turbo generator in case of power loss. Despite the fact that the technical circumstances didn’t correspond to the test plan, it wasn’t canceled.

The experiment began at 01:23. The situation got out of control. At 01:25, two explosions erupted a few seconds apart, causing the complete collapse of the unit. More than 30 fires broke out. The main ones were extinguished in an hour, and the fire was completely eliminated by 5 am on April 26. A lot more you can learn during trips to Chernobyl.

At the time of the accident, 17 employees were in the premises of the 4th reactor. One of them died under the rubble, another one died of radiation and 11 workers received radiation doses. Finally, all of them died because of radiation sickness on May 20, 1986. Other 14 station employees received doses that caused 3d and 4th grades of radiation sickness.

How was the accident liquidated?

The day after the catastrophe, the government commission decided to immediately stop the 1st and 2nd power units and evacuate the population of Pripyat. The servicemen were immediately thrown to liquidate the fires. work. According to incomplete data, nearly 600 thousand people took part in the elimination of the consequences. Many of them became ill due to radiation.

Firefighters arrived “bare-handed”, without any means of protection, due to which radioactive substances hitted their airways. Thanks to them, another possible disaster was stopped – hydrogen explosion. The total number of radioactive particles emitted into the air after the Chernobyl accident was 30-40 times higher than in Hiroshima. Almost 8.5 million people were affected.

When did the evacuation start?

The first official local report of the Chernobyl tragedy appeared only 36 hours later – at noon on April 27, Pripyat radio announced the “temporary evacuation” of Pripyat residents, the nearest city to the Chernobyl nuclear power plant with a population of about 50,000. Thanks to trips to Pripyat, you are able to fully feel the atmosphere of this ghost-town.

The city was divided into 5 sectors. People were advised to shut down the windows, balconies, turn off electricity, together with water and gas. Besides, they were asked to take particular things, food, valuables and documents for the first time. Other things, such as dishes and children’s toys, as well as pets were not allowed to be taken out.

In order to reduce the amount of luggage and not cause chaos, authorities promised to return people to their homes in 3 days. From 2 to 4.30 p.m. the evacuation of the population from the city was completed: 44.5 thousand people were deported. Also, there were 5 thousand people left in Pripyat who were involved in urgent works.

Are trips to Chernobyl possible today?

By the 6th of May more than 115 thousand people had been removed from the 30-kilometer area around the accident. This zone has suffered from radiation the most. Later it was called the Chernobyl Exclusion Zone. Nowadays you can legally make Chernobyl trips without a fear of being evacuated.

What was the destiny of Pripyat residents?

Most people were evicted to neighboring districts of Kyiv region. Hundreds of small villages at the epicenter of the pollution were bulldozed. At the end of 1986, the youngest city in Ukraine, Slavutych, was built for Chernobyl workers and their families. The construction was completed in record time – the first inhabitants settled in 1987-1988.

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