Fires in Chernobyl forests increase radiation background by 16 times

Fires in Chernobyl forests increase radiation background by 16 times

The Chernobyl exclusion zone, which consists of forests, is covered by fires. They began on April 4 with deliberate arson. Firefighter teams are trying to fight the fire. But so far it has not been possible to eliminate the fires. Thirty after the accident at the Chernobyl nuclear power plant, experts began to say that the territory where a nuclear disaster occurred in 1986 could be safe for people.

But today, forest fires broke out in the exclusion zone, which led to an increase in the background radiation. Its values are 16 times higher than previous figures. The problem is that during forest fires, the level of radiation has increased significantly.

For many years, radiation hid in the soil, leaves, and wood on the territory of thirty kilometres that make up the Chernobyl exclusion zone. Researchers have observed periods over the past years when radiation levels were completely negligible.

This situation made it possible to safely visit the Chernobyl forests. But it has changed dramatically since the start of the fire. The first fire broke out on April 4 on the outskirts. The police have data, the fire was deliberate, someone deliberately set off a fire.

A team of firefighters went to the scene. In total, more than a hundred specialists were involved in the elimination of the fire. For the speedy elimination of the fire, technical resources were involved, including aeroplanes and helicopters, dumping tons of water to the fires. Images made from space by satellites indicate that fires are continuing.

Near the fires, radiation background measurements were taken. They showed an excess of the average level characteristic of this territory - 16 times. The fire turned out to be very destructive for forest areas. It caused the release of radioactive isotopes.

Experts previously warned of the dangers of forest fires around Chernobyl and gave Ukrainian authorities recommendations to take appropriate protective measures.