Visiting the abandoned city of Pripyat and the disaster site of Chernobyl was an experience that I was looking forward to for a very long time. While I was there I had many mixed feelings. On one hand I was having laughs with my friends and found everything ‘amazingly beautiful’ to shoot, while on the other hand I realized I was in and nearby the place where the world’s worst nuclear disaster happened. A place of sadness and death.
The photos have been taken in May 2017 in the abandoned city of Pripyat, 3 kilometres from the location where 31 years ago the worlds worst nuclear disaster happened in Chernobyl. The city was named after the nearby river Pripyat and erected to house the 50.000 workers and families for the plant.
The shortest summary I can give about the accident that happened is that, while the Soviet claim they were testing a brand new safety system, they were actually performing a test that should have been carried out 3 years before taking the reactor in operation. Under pressure of finishing the project within time they decided to skip this and other tests. The same test had already been conducted in a different reactor three times before that and each time the test failed. The cause of this is lying in the design of the RBMK-1000 reactor. Next to that it certainly didn’t help that the least experienced crew was carrying out the test during the night, the test wasn’t going as planned and eventually Alexander Akimov (shift chief) made a world changing decision to press the emergency button at 01.23.40am on April 26th, 1986. It was the worst thing that he could have done and what he didn’t realise is that he just changed the course of history.
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