By Mark McConville
EERIE Images have revealed the ghostly remains of Chernobyl and Pripyat 32 years after the cities were abandoned following the Chernobyl disaster.
The creepy pictures show a huge Ferris wheel long since it stopped turning, classrooms filled with desks and school work and a piano on a crumbling stage.
Other spooky shots show a chessboard left mid-game, a room full of children’s beds with stuffed toys left behind and bumper cars rusting after being left to face the elements.
Romanian photographer, Cristian Lipovan travelled to Chernobyl and Pripyat in Northern Ukraine to photograph the ghost remnants that remain.
The explosion of Chernobyl in 1986 shook its neighbour, Pripyat and shaped the tragedy of two cities. To this day, the abandoned cities remain untouched.
“In the photos, you can see the sad or the happy story of a people who once lived there” says Lipovan.
Lipovan has captured abandoned classrooms, baby cribs and amusement parks to name a few.
“My expedition to Chernobyl and Pripyat was the most exciting adventure I have ever had. It changed my life – I now appreciate everything around me. My next expedition will take me to Fukushima in Japan”.
The Chernobyl disaster, also referred to as the Chernobyl accident, was a catastrophic nuclear accident. It occurred on 25–26 April 1986 in the No. 4 light water graphite moderated reactor at the Chernobyl Nuclear Power Plant near the now-abandoned town of Pripyat, in northern Ukrainian Soviet Socialist Republic, Soviet Union, approximately 65 miles north of Kiev.
The event occurred during a late-night safety test which simulated a station blackout power-failure, in the course of which safety systems were intentionally turned off. A combination of inherent reactor design flaws and the reactor operators arranging the core in a manner contrary to the checklist for the test, eventually resulted in uncontrolled reaction conditions. Water flashed into steam generating a destructive steam explosion and a subsequent open-air graphite fire.
This fire produced considerable updrafts for about nine days. These lofted plumes of fission products into the atmosphere. The estimated radioactive inventory that was released during this very hot fire phase approximately equaled in magnitude the airborne fission products released in the initial destructive explosion. This radioactive material precipitated onto parts of the western USSR and Europe.
During the accident, steam-blast effects caused two deaths within the facility: one immediately after the explosion, and the other compounded by a lethal dose of radiation. Over the coming days and weeks, 134 servicemen were hospitalized with acute radiation sickness (ARS), of which 28 firemen and employees died in the days-to-months afterward from the radiation effects. Additionally, approximately fourteen radiation induced cancer deaths among this group of 134 hospitalized survivors were to follow within the next ten years (1996).