1986, Kiev, Ukraine.

Reactor No/4 Publication Cover

Mixed media, A5.

CHERNOBYL BLOG

September - January 2015

Liquidators wash the radioactive dust off the streets using a product called “bourda”, meaning molasses

Liquidators wash the radioactive dust off the streets using a product called “bourda”, meaning molasses

The Liquidators.

Mixed media on paper - A5

'It's Hot' - Lieutenant Volodymyr Pravik

“We arrived there at 10 or 15 minutes to two in the morning…. We saw graphite scattered about. Misha asked: “Is that graphite?” I kicked it away. But one of the fighters on the other truck picked it up. “It’s hot,” he said. The pieces of graphite were of different sizes, some big, some small, enough to pick them up…”

“We didn’t know much about radiation. Even those who worked there had no idea. There was no water left in the trucks. Misha filled a cistern and we aimed the water at the top. Then those boys who died went up to the roof – Vashchik, Kolya and others, and Volodya Pravik…. They went up the ladder … and I never saw them again.” - Grigorii Khmel, the driver of one of the fire engines.

Radiation Exposure

Acrylic on paper - A1

However, Anatoli Zakharov, a fireman stationed in Chernobyl since 1980, offers a different description:

I remember joking to the others, “There must be an incredible amount of radiation here. We’ll be lucky if we’re all still alive in the morning.”

Twenty years after the disaster, he said the firefighters from the Fire Station No. 2 were aware of the risks

Aerial view of Reactor Four

Aerial view of Reactor Four

Radiation Poisoning

Microsieverts, one millionth of a sievert and abbreviated as uSv (1,000,000uSv = 1Sv)

Acrylic/drawing on paper - A1