Kiev Residents Told to Stay Indoors as Smoke from Chernobyl Fires Blankets the City

Meatpie

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Kiev residents were told to shut their windows and stay indoors yesterday after thick smoke from wildfires in the Chernobyl exclusion zone blanketed the Ukrainian capital.

The authorities insisted, however, that the blanket of thick yellowish smoke, which came in from forest fires smouldering in the area around the now defunct Chernobyl nuclear power station, was not a health hazard.

Fires that had been raging in the area for two weeks, described as the worst since the 1986 explosion at the power station, were put out on Wednesday.

Several patches of the forest, however, were still smoldering when high winds ignited new, albeit smaller fires on Thursday afternoon.




Ukraine's health ministry says the radiation level remains normal and Chernobyl faces no immediate threat.

At one point on Thursday, according to the IQAir index, Kyiv's air pollution was the worst in the world.
 

phyzzique

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:skull:Nuclear waste lasts forever:skull:
 

Meatpie

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Not really but according to conservative estimates it may take at least 20,000 years for the Chernobyl zone to cleanse itself naturally and become suitable for habitation again.

For twelve days following the accident in 1986, radioactive plumes stretched well throughout the European continent, measuring anywhere from 2.0 mSv (Greece) to 12.0 mSv (City of Kiev)—as a quick comparison, a typical chest x-ray lands a dosage of 0.10 mSv.

Effects could be seen in radioactive boars in German and contaminated mushrooms in Bulgaria. In fact, thousands of polluted reindeer had to be slaughtered in northern Scandinavia due to their unfortunate eating habits of lichen, which efficiently absorb chemicals and nutrients from the air including radioactive elements from the cloud.
 

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Did you know that every person living on Earth is still exposed to global collective dose from Chernobyl up to 600,000 man Sv, equivalent on average to 21 additional days of world exposure to natural background radiation. So as you walk in NYC minute radionuclides released by the blast in 1986 still get through your body.
 

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Not really but according to conservative estimates it may take at least 20,000 years for the Chernobyl zone to cleanse itself naturally and become suitable for habitation again.

For twelve days following the accident in 1986, radioactive plumes stretched well throughout the European continent, measuring anywhere from 2.0 mSv (Greece) to 12.0 mSv (City of Kiev)—as a quick comparison, a typical chest x-ray lands a dosage of 0.10 mSv.

Effects could be seen in radioactive boars in German and contaminated mushrooms in Bulgaria. In fact, thousands of polluted reindeer had to be slaughtered in northern Scandinavia due to their unfortunate eating habits of lichen, which efficiently absorb chemicals and nutrients from the air including radioactive elements from the cloud.
The plume reached as far as Britain - for years sheep in parts of North Wales and the Lake District were unfit for human consumption due to their levels of radioactive caesium.
Though it was noted that the Lake District contamination did seem to centre on the hills near Sellafield, and the Welsh hotspot was near a nuclear power station where there had been rumours of a leak ...
 

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Astonish info and details DD many thanks for posting.
 

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Cesium-137 from Chernobyl Fires May Have Reached as Far as France and Levels Were Elevated in Kiev According to a Report Released by the French Radioprotection and Nuclear Safety Institute


 

Meatpie

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Chernobyl: When fire hits a post-nuclear wilderness - BBC News

 

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The plume reached as far as Britain - for years sheep in parts of North Wales and the Lake District were unfit for human consumption due to their levels of radioactive caesium.
Though it was noted that the Lake District contamination did seem to centre on the hills near Sellafield, and the Welsh hotspot was near a nuclear power station where there had been rumours of a leak ...
I did not mention that 'Sellafield'' is the renaming of Windscale - now why would you not want to continue calling it Windscale after it became world-famous for the Windscale Fire? Info below, and almost ever\y sentence is scarier than the one before - take this for an example "Tom Tuohy suggested trying to eject some from the heart of the fire by bludgeoning the melted cartridges through the reactor and into the cooling pond behind it with scaffolding poles. This proved impossible and the fuel rods refused to budge, no matter how much force was applied".

 

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Thanks DD I hadn't even heard about this until today!
 

deaddirty

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Well-known here, though of course a long time ago now. I was going to say that it was the world's first major nuclear accident, but checking my facts I see it was a week after the Kyshtym disaster in Russia, which was a lot worse though not a reactor accident.
And the Windscale Fire may yet return to haunt us - some of the debris along with all sorts of other highly-radioactive and undocumented nasties are stored in deteriorating 1950s structures, including the 'legacy ponds' which are open-topped above-ground concrete tanks which are now leaking - and some of the contents are liable to spontaneously ignite if they dry out!. There were two excellent BBC documentaries about this a few years ago - not currently available on iPlayer because they haven't been re-broadcast recently, but |I've managed to find one of them here - go to about 52:00 for the really scary bit.
https://www.dailymotion.com/video/x5yd169
 

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Thank you for those wondeful updates and links. It is all new to me.
 

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Thanks Meatpie. One good thing about Bulgaria (of many, I'm sure) - it's about 1000 miles from Sellafield. I'm only 100 miles, and I'm downwind. Bu so far as I know the only fallout I've been exposed to was from Chernobyl - I got caught on top of a hill in a thunderstorm the day that came down.
 

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Awesome you remember it clearly. There was massive fallout in Bulgaria one of the biggest in Europe after Ukraine and Russia.
 

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Yes I saw that in the other thread, I didn't know before.
it was quite memorable for me - I wasn't often caught out by the weather on the hills, I've normally got a good eye for the weather. But that day I'd been working indoors in Preston, came out and it was a lovely sunny fresh May evening, light till gone 9pm here, so I grabbed a bite to eat and headed onto the Forest of Bowland hills:



I'd just got up onto that wide flat top, highest land for miles around, when suddenly a thunderstorm developed out of nothing and came straight overhead - didn't feel like thunder, didn't look like thunder, forecast hadn't mentioned thunder, it was weird - only time I've ever been caught in seriously dangerous place in a thunderstorm. And within minutes it was a clear fresh Spring evening again. Of course I was soaked by the storm, but by the time I'd got back to my car then driven back to Preston I'd dried out - and it was late, my rather downmarket guest house only had one shower for several rooms and someone was in it, so I just went to bed. And it was several days before our government admitted that those showers and storms had brought Chernobyl fallout down, an I must have had it in my hair and my clothes. I tend to remember things like that!
 

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Thank you for sharing your experience with us. Do you remember the exact date?

Radioactive particles can indeed stick to clothes but they usually don't penetrate the body but once you ingest or inhale them it is a different story.
 

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Meatpie

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I've read that entire article three times already.
 
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