Chernobyl Disaster Case Study

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To a large extent the fallout of the Chernobyl disaster could have been minimised if effective emergency procedures had been in place. The cause of the disaster had been human error but the consequences could have been minimised, had the correct procedures been followed and had the emergency systems not been switched off. The crew purposely switched the emergency procedures to avoid any possible interruptions (source 7). The graphite rods had been completely retracted out of the core leaving the crew with very little control over the reactor, source 8, so when the power surged there was no emergency system to shut down the reactor. “The engineers who designed the test were specialists in electric generators”(source 9), and thus unskilled when it came to the nuclear reactor. Along with the engineers that were not qualified or experienced to design the test, the nuclear reactor specialists were not consulted during the process.…show more content…
The radiation levels were so high that they were detectable in Finland after short while (source 3). The radiation was unevenly spread over the Ukraine but Pripyat, the nearest town to the Chernobyl power plant was affected the most. After a few days the town was evacuated but the time taken to evacuate the town was much too slow. The authorities seem to have had no plan in place in case of such an emergency. The authorities first had to come together to discuss the steps forward after the disaster. According to an eyewitness account from Lyubov’ Kovalevskaya, source 15, there was water everywhere in the streets, in some places there was a certain white liquid as well. She also claims that the authorities were doing nothing to evacuate the town, “they were sitting in various places” . This proves that to a large extent the fall out of the Chernobyl disaster could have been minimised if the authorities had acted faster and evacuated Pripyat

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