Chernobyl Disaster – UPSC Prelims

What was the Chernobyl Disaster?
  • The Chernobyl accident in 1986 was the result of a flawed reactor design that was operated with inadequately trained personnel.
  • The resulting steam explosion and fires released at least 5% of the radioactive reactor core into the environment, with the deposition of radioactive materials in many parts of Europe.
  • The disaster was a unique event and the only accident in the history of commercial nuclear power where radiation-related fatalities occurred.
  • Two Chernobyl plant workers died due to the explosion on the night of the accident, and a further 28 people died within a few weeks as a result of acute radiation syndrome.
  • Some 350,000 people were evacuated as a result of the accident, but resettlement of areas from which people were relocated is ongoing.