Журнал Viche 2011 №7

№7, 2011

Chornobyl: 25 Years after

On April 26, 1986 at 1.23 a.m. the fourth power-generating unit exploded at Chornobyl nuclear station. The deadly radioactive cloud covered the surrounding area, left its trace in Europe and even reached the USA east coast. About 600 thousand people, primarily the liquidators of the world's largest anthropogenic disaster, received radiation injury. Access to the nuclear station is still limited with a 30-kilometer exclusion zone.

Valeriy MAKARENKO, special correspondent of the Ukrainian television in 1986:

According to the president of the Ukrainian Public Association “Chornobyl Union of Ukraine”, the main reason for the explosion of the reactor is a shortcoming in the test programme which was executed at the fourth power block. The fact is that for the reactor experiment there was selected the dangerous working mode, thus it was not prohibited by the instructions. All eight main circulation pumps worked, but usually no more than two pumps were used for such power capacity of the reactor. As a result, water boiled in the housing pumps. The reactor had no cooling and a steam explosion happened. Two weeks later after the accident some additions based on the experience of the tragedy were made to the operating instructions.

He stayed at the Chornobyl nuclear power station till November, 30, 1986 – it was a day when the crucial period of the accident liquidation was completed. Being in the zone, I met many wonderful people. I keep writing now about their fates and about the Chornobyl tragedy in general. I have shot four documentaries.

Ihor VOYTOVYCH, the captain of the Internal Fire Service of the Kyiv region in 1986:

- First men who had to fight the fire at the fourth power block, destroyed by the explosion, were firefighters of protection units of the Chornobyl nuclear power station from the cities of Pripyat and Chornobyl. They have received huge doses of radiation and were immediately sent to Kyiv and Moscow for treatment.