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Ukraine to open Chernobyl to Tourists in 2011.

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Pandora | 17:38
Couple of Articles on it :

NY Daily News

Popular Science

TIME News Feed

To recap for those of you who don't know: (From Wikipedia, sure it's bias, but that's okay)

The Chernobyl disaster was a well-known nuclear accident of catastrophic proportions that occurred on 26 April 1986, at the Chernobyl Nuclear Power Plant in Ukraine (then in the Ukrainian Soviet Socialist Republic, part of the Soviet Union). It is considered the worst nuclear power plant accident in history and is the only level 7 event on the International Nuclear Event Scale.

The disaster occurred on 26 April 1986, 1:23 A.M., at reactor number four at the Chernobyl plant, near the town of Pripyat, during an unauthorized systems test. A sudden power output surge took place, and when an attempt was made at an emergency shutdown, a more extreme spike in power output occurred which led to the rupture of a reactor vessel as well as a series of explosions. This event exposed the graphite moderator components of the reactor to air and they ignited; the resulting fire sent a plume of radioactive fallout into the atmosphere and over an extensive area, including Pripyat. The plume drifted over large parts of the western Soviet Union, and much of Europe. As of December 2000, 350,400 people had been evacuated and resettled from the most severely contaminated areas of Belarus, Russia, and Ukraine. According to official post-Soviet data, up to 70% of the fallout landed in Belarus.

Following the accident, Ukraine continued to operate the remaining reactors at Chernobyl for many years. The last reactor at the site was closed down in 2000.

The accident raised concerns about the safety of the Soviet nuclear power industry as well as nuclear power in general, slowing its expansion for a number of years while forcing the Soviet government to become less secretive about its procedures.

Russia, Ukraine, and Belarus have been burdened with the continuing and substantial decontamination and health care costs of the Chernobyl accident. A 2006 report prepared by the Chernobyl Forum, led by the World Health Organization (WHO) states, "Among the 134 emergency workers involved in the immediate mitigation of the Chernobyl accident, severely exposed workers and firemen during the first days, 28 persons died in 1986 due to ARS (Acute Radiation Syndrome), and 19 more persons died in 1987-2004 from different causes. Among the general population affected by Chernobyl radioactive fallout, the much lower exposures meant that ARS cases did not occur". It is estimated that there may ultimately be a total of 4,000 deaths attributable to the accident, due to increased cancer risk.

This worse part really is that, the actual impact of thise nuclear accident is dramatically simplified and overlooked. The way the evacuations were handled, the way the 'clean up' workers were treated, in the end there were alot of deaths and 'after effects' that could have been prevented.

They didn't actually evacuate the city of Pripyat until 3 days later, still giving the people a false sense of security that they were not at any risk. (Most of you will recognize the city from Call of Duty: Modern Warfare... its where you have to snipe the bad guy from the top of that building and wait for the helicopter at the ferris wheel?? ya?)

Anyway... the point being.

Sure they say that life has returned around the area, and at certain parts the levels of radiation aren't that bad... but they are still planning on a fitting of a newer sarcophagus over the reactor.. which is to seal off the area.

One site noted:
"Recent studies find the Sarcophagus covering Reactor No. 4 to be full of holes. An engineering report stated that the stone coffin would collapse in an earthquake measuring 6 or more on the Richter scale. It is estimated that an earthquake of that magnitude should hit the Chernobyl region once every century. If this were to happen, it would release large clouds of radioactive dust that could once again blow around the earth"

So the place is still dangerous and a threat.. yet they are turning it into a tourist attraction?

Any thoughts?

4 reakce
zjenn4 | 04:04
Doesn't sound like the type of place I will be visiting any time soon. Some places are just not recoverable, perhaps this is one of them?
Arual_92 | 16:34
There are all kinds of people in this world, including the kind that find it exciting and quite an adrenaline-rush to do something potentially dangerous. That's why they're turning it into a tourist attraction! It's not my cup of tea either, I don't know why anyone would want to visit Chernobyl but there u go! Some people actually like visiting places struck by disaster
Sairina | 20:30
I agree I do not believe that Chernobyl is safe or ever will be in our life time. I also agree that it is insane to open the site to the public. But on the other hand, I suppose I am one of those people who would like to see the place. I know it is dangerous but it's like the saying goes: "Curiosity killed the cat."
Datagutten | 17:34
It could be fun to see a town abandoned in a hurry. The money generated by the visitors will be used to make the new sarcophagus.
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