1986 – The nuclear Hell of Chernobyl and the Fox of Pripyat Ghost Town

Villages in the exclusion zone

There are those kinds of pictures that burn themselves into your mind for the whole lifetime. The aerial photo of the destroyed Chernobyl reactor with the red-white, scaffolded chimney going around the world in 1986 is such an image. An ice-cold shiver runs down my back when the forest thins out as the prospect reveals that particular chimney. We drive towards the ruin of reactor 4 along two massive cooling towers and reactor 5. Both constructions didn’t get finished. Even from far away you can spot how terminally rusty everything is… Terrible!

Impressive is also the shield being built to construct the new sarcophagus. With a height of 108 metres that kind of housing is even taller than the former Cargolifter hall, nowadays Tropical Islands. The giant protection screen will be moved over the reactor ruin to allow a controlled demolition of the old very brittle concrete shelter.

Half-life period of 239Plutonium: 24110 years

Then the wrecked reactor will become opened again exposing the core meltdown currently lying dormant inside.

The giant hall will hopefully protect us all from that massive radiation. This time remote controlled machines will do the construction job and not humans, like back in 1986. Why all that? Well, to turn a provisional arrangement into a final solution; a final solution also being documented for our descendants to make them knowing everything related to this accident as the melted core will radiate for many thousands for years.

Parts of the turbine hall recently collapsed, what is no good sign at all…! In the face of such instability I have no clue why European sponsor held desperately needed money back. Now, in April 2015 they finally bothered to provide the finances needed. The current sarcophagus was built by the Soviets as provisional structure. Then Soviet Union collapsed and the nuclear disaster slid into obscurity. The EU and Germany say Ukraine is a part of Europe. So why the hell is the EU, a tool of the Yankees, busy maddening the Russians instead of taking up the baton of caring about the nuclear legacy of Chernobyl?! What an evidence of incapacity given by those representing us.

Leonid keeps on talking about his memories. Nobody really knew what happened and what will happen. The curtain of silence was drawn above everything. It was apparent that the power plant was burning but the severe danger emanating from it was known to a few people only as most of the people worked as normal technicians.

“We were workers and not an army of all knowing nuclear physicists!” says Leonid. The fire and reactor catastrophe was in full swing. After endlessly appearing 36 hours Pripyat got finally evacuated. His family left the scene, but Leonid stayed. Men who already had children had to stay, got faced with containment and clean-up operations.

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