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Apr 6

In the zone of alienation in northern Ukraine, Kiev Oblast, near the border with Belarus.  Its population had been around 50,000 prior to the accident. Today, the only residents are deer and wolves along with a solitary guard.

Prypiat used to be proud for being home to the Chernobyl Nuclear Power Plant workers. But something happened on 26 April 1986.

It took three days before all permanent residents of Chernobyl and the Zone of alienation were evacuated due to unsafe levels of radioactivity. People from around the Soviet Union were forced to come and work here in order to liquidate the danger and evacuate the residents. Many of the workers died or had serious illness from radiation

After the explosion at Reactor 4 the people of Pripyat flocked on the railway bridge just outside the city to get a good view of the reactor and see what had happened.

Initially, everyone was told that radiation level was minimal and that they were safe. Little did they know that much of the radiation had been blown onto this bridge in a huge spike.

They saw a beautiful rainbow of coloured flames of the burning graphite nuclear core, whose flames were higher than the smoke stack itself. All of them are dead now – they were exposed to levels of over 500 roentgens, which is a fatal dose.

A Russian publication concludes that 985,000 premature cancer deaths occurred worldwide between 1986 and 2004 as a result of radioactive contamination from Chernobyl.

26 Years later the majority of Prypiat is still inhabitable.