Radiation was so strong that skin melted off of their bodies, and the Chernobyl firefighters' eyes turned from brown to blue. The largest amount of these liquidators – nearly 200,000 – were first responders in 1986.

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Photos Of Chernobyl First Responders By Marina Galperina | April 30, 2014 - 05:36PM. “Thoughts of my family would flash through my mind and be gone,” he told, It was clear that the Soviet government was not equipped to handle such a catastrophe, and they lacked the necessary equipment to protect first responders, who largely consisted of 30- to 40-year-old men from the military's reserves. For this reason, radio-controlled vehicles were initially used to clear the most hazardous debris: highly radioactive fuel from the reactor's core that was thrown onto the roof of reactor three. See the intimate documentation above. About an hour after the fire began, a group of fire fighters with symptoms of radiation exposure were taken down from a rooftop close to the damaged reactor.

Chernobyl liquidators, the brave people tasked with cleaning up the radioactive mess, tell a gruesome story that didn't stop when the fire was put out. These old photos posted by Alexander Strannik on his LiveJournal were taken in 1986 in Chernobyl, a few months after the infamous catastrophic nuclear incident. {{familyColorButtonText(colorFamily.name)}}, View {{carousel.total_number_of_results}} results.

Col. Leonid Telyatnikov, firefighters were armed with nothing more than normal fire-fighting uniforms, gas masks, and hoses. He was part of one of the first major clean up/reconstruction crews, but not one of the “heroes” who “by bravery or ignorance” were working directly at the site of the reactor, building a barrier (“a sarcophagus”) to prevent further explosions from releasing more radioactive particles into the atmosphere. {{collectionsDisplayName(searchView.appliedFilters)}}, {{searchText.groupByEventToggleImages()}}, {{searchText.groupByEventToggleEvents()}}. According to fire fighter and first-responder Lieut.

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The second phase, considered the "early phase," consisted of firefighters and military reserves who helped clean up the area and built a sarcophagus around the reactor in 1986. Many others, who survived acute radiation poisoning (along with some of the.

Where technology failed, humans stepped in, but it wasn't without consequence. The IBM strategic repository for digital assets such as images and videos is located at dam.ibm.com.

Here are two brave photographers who took the first pictures of the Chernobyl disaster from a helicopter in April 1986. Credit: SHONE/Gamma-Rapho via Getty Images. While some first responders managed to create makeshift steel protection, the very first firefighters who rushed to the scene were completely unprotected. Click here to request Getty Images Premium Access through IBM Creative Design Services. Radiation from the Chernobyl disaster was, without a doubt, wildly harmful to humans. On April 26, 1986, the Ukraine suffered a tragedy of such a large scale that it would never be the same. These brave heroes literally crawled into glowing, radioactive wreckage to prevent the fire from spreading, knowing it would likely prove to be a death sentence. Though the idea of radiation poisoning crossed through their minds (it was inevitable should they choose to do their jobs), they were determined to contain the fire. According to fire fighter and first-responder Lieut. With little protection from radiation other than makeshift lead suits, 28 firemen and employees died in the weeks following the event. Unfortunately, the radiation was so strong that it destroyed the electronics inside of the vehicles, and the only remedy was to remove the radioactive materials by hand. First pictures.

Kostin remembered: Everyone is instructed to throw a shovelful of radioactive dust and then run. For this reason.

No one spoke about the radiation risk – or their terrifying, looming fate – and many contracted radiation poisoning as they worked, but still didn't stop. According to, now-radioactive animals that survived Chernobyl.

The cleanup was then split between Russia, Belarus, and Ukraine. (Photos: @Александр Странник). The most frightening thought we all had was that we wouldn’t have enough strength to hold out until reserves came and prevent the fire from getting out of control. There was the "initial phase," which included firefighters who showed up as early as 24 hours before the evacuation of Pripyat, the nuclear city in which Chernobyl was located.

Select from premium Chernobyl of the highest quality. According to Igor Kostin, a reporter on the scene who wrote the book Chernobyl: Confessions of a Reporter, first responders were instructed to create makeshift radiation armor from lead sheets that covered the walls of various government buildings. There were also research scientists, medical teams and rotating crews to help with decontamination of the responders’ clothes and equipment, though it’s questionable just how effective this was, considering that area is still quarantined today and the unfortunate people employed there are only allowed 15 minute shifts due to continuing radiation exposure. On April 26, 1986, an accident in the Chernobyl Nuclear Power Plant near Pripyat, Ukrainian SSR, caused a blast & fires that released at least 5% of the radioactive reactor core into the atmosphere, contaminating everything around it for years. Though the idea of radiation poisoning crossed through their minds (it was inevitable should they choose to do their jobs), they were determined to contain the fire. With little protection from radiation other than makeshift lead suits, 28 firemen and employees died in the weeks following the event.

The catastrophic nuclear accident occurred when Chernobyl's nuclear reactor exploded after an open-air graphite fire. Thirty-three years ago, a series of explosions destroyed Chernobyl's reactor No. Many others, who survived acute radiation poisoning (along with some of the now-radioactive animals that survived Chernobyl), returned from the cleanup site with a wealth of on-going health problems. In 1986, Strannik says their work was limited to hour long shifts.

Col. Leonid Telyatnikov, firefighters were armed with nothing more than normal fire-fighting uniforms, gas masks, and hoses. Liquidators came in three phases. General Tarakanov ordered them to remove the lead sheets covering the walls of the government subcommittee bureaus in order to make them rudimentary protective clothing. “Thoughts of my family would flash through my mind and be gone,” he told People magazine.

Someone had to clean up the radioactive mess, and the disaster liquidators stepped up to the plate. When they arrived at the plant, the radiation meters had frozen on the highest level – but they charged through anyway, trying to fight the blaze before it spread to the surrounding area. The largest amount of these liquidators – nearly 200,000 – were first responders in 1986. Chernobyl Disaster in rare pictures, 1986 Liquidators clean the roof of the No.

The catastrophic nuclear accident occurred when Chernobyl's nuclear reactor exploded after an open-air graphite fire. Those in the late phase were the least likely to have problems, as they entered the workforce during the end of the sarcophagus construction and the dissolution of the USSR.