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Eerie, Haunting, Abandon, Chernobyl Gallery
Surreal images of a place frozen in time
Chernobyl was the first nuclear power plant in the Soviet Ukraine. Recently the HBO's dramatic series "Chernobyl" has boosted interest in the Chernobyl Nuclear Power Plant disaster, which happened more than 30 years ago, on April 26, 1986. After the Chernobyl reactor exploded radioactive particles quickly dispersed into the surrounding area. It took Soviet authorities a full day to order Pripyat citizens to evacuate and relocate between 200,000 and 400,00 people. The official short-term death toll was just 31. Estimates of those who perished afterwards vary between 4,000 and 93,000. Authorities declared a so-called exclusion zone covering 18 miles (30 kilometers) around the site of the explosion, and the abandoned towns remain uninhabited to this day. The Prime Minister at the time, Mikhail Gorbachev, said that the USSR spent $18 billion on containment and decontamination.
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