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World most extreme places

Invisible death. The most radioactive zones on the planet

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The mere mention of increasingly radioactive background is associated with scary mutations and unexplained disease. The planet still has a lot of areas with high radiation levels. Even a short stay in these areas can cause an extensive damage to health. Old military and aerospace factories, industrial centers and quarries, as well as rare minerals are just a few reasons why life-threatening radioactive zones have appeared on earth. However, people continue to live in these areas. Scary stories about the consequences of an exposure to the radiation don’t frighten some travelers. In order not to get to one of the most radioactive places on the planet by accident, you should definitely get acquainted with the present rating.

Fukushima Daini Nuclear Plant, Japan

The accident that occurred at the notorious nuclear power plant Fukushima-1 is considered the most long-lasting and large-scale in the history of the mankind. Due to the earthquake, three reactors were damaged. There was a huge-scale radiation leak; the radiation has spread over a distance of 300 km. Now, the territory of the nuclear power plant and its immediate surroundings are among the most radioactive places on the planet. A strong earthquake in the Fukushima area began on March 11, 2011. A state of emergency was declared on the same day; all units were suspended.

Fukushima Daini Nuclear Plant, Japan Only because of qualified actions of station workers, it was managed to avoid the huge human losses. Just one person has died during the repair of the damaged reactors. The scale of an accident was surprising even for experienced professionals. Initially, an area within a radius of 3 kilometers from the station was declared dangerous, and after a few hours, the radiation spread within the radius of 10 km. Today, there is a high background radiation even at a distance of 320 km from the power plant. Fukushima-1 remains the epicenter of the disaster. This is where the radiation level is the highest.

Continuous cleaning works on its territory do not stop after the accident. Experts note that it will take at least 40 years for full recovery. Currently, the main danger for the residents of the surrounding areas is a leak of radioactive water from the plant, which began to wash over the underground barriers. It’s difficult to monitor the situation even after the construction of new storage facilities. A huge amount of contaminated water can cause a new catastrophe. Next - Semipalatinsk Test Site

Semipalatinsk Test Site, Kazakhstan

Semipalatinsk Test Site, Kazakhstan The Semipalatinsk test site is located in Kazakhstan. It was the first place in the Soviet Union for the nuclear bombs tryout. That significant event happened in August, 1949. Since then, the area of ​​18 500 square meters was a regular place of the testing nuclear weapons. Today, the landfill is a true champion of the world in the number of nuclear explosions per unit of area. Roughly estimated, numerous tests have affected about 200 000 people. Complete article

Mayak Factory, Russia

Mayak Factory, Russia A terrifying story occurred in the city of Ozersk. One of the world's largest nuclear plants, Mayak, has been working there for several decades. In 1957, there was a major accident. It resulted in a leakage of about 100 tons of radioactive material into the environment. The huge territory has been subjected to contamination. Later, it became known as the East Ural radioactive trail. Its length was more than 300 km, and the width was between 5 and 10 km, respectively. Complete article

Santa Susana Field Laboratory, USA

Santa Susana Field Laboratory, USA One of the most dangerous radioactive areas in the United States is the territory of the Santa Susanna laboratory. The lab occupies more than 1 000 hectares. It embraces a range of industrial and academic buildings, which for many years were used for creating and testing rocket engines. The laboratory belongs to NASA. Since its foundation, the main purpose was to create the most powerful space engine running on a liquid fuel. Complete article

Fort d'Aubervilliers, France

Fort d'Aubervilliers, France Infected areas can be found on the territory of today's large cities. The French capital, and more specifically, the area of ​​Fort d'Aubervilliers is a great example. Once, the area had large fortifications that in the 30s of the last century were used for studying radioactive materials. The fortifications were housing dozens of barrels of nuclear waste. The impact of this activities is still felt today. Complete article

Chemical Factory Mailu-Suu, Kyrgyzstan

Chemical Factory Mailu-Suu, Kyrgyzstan The sunny Kyrgyzstan, which is famous for its wonderful mountain scenery and fertile soils, has areas that are contaminated with nuclear waste. The most polluted is a fabulously beautiful mountain region Mailu-Suu. Tests of nuclear weapons were never conducted there and nuclear power plants were never built. During the past decades, uranium was being mined at these places. The environment is suffering because of this industrial activity. Huge amounts of radioactive elements are vented daily. Complete article

Sellafield Power Plant, United Kingdom

Sellafield Power Plant, United Kingdom The UK didn’t avoid the consequences of the nuclear activities. One of the most radioactively dangerous areas of the country is Sellafield. Once, the city featured a large factory that was engaged in the production of nuclear bombs and dealing with plutonium. A huge nuclear complex on the shore of the Irish Sea was founded in 1947. Already in 1953, the nuclear power plant was built on its territory. Complete article

Hanford Nuclear Reservation Site, USA

Hanford Nuclear Reservation Site, USA One of the most advanced countries in the world in terms of development of the nuclear industry is the United States. Thus, it is not surprising that most of the contaminated areas are situated there. One of the world leaders in terms of the background radiation is Hanford Nuclear Reservation Site. That’s one of the world's largest industrial complexes that was used for the production of nuclear bombs and weapons-grade plutonium. The atomic bomb, which the US later dropped on Nagasaki, was made here. Complete article

McClure Radioactive Site, USA

McClure Radioactive Site, USA Another place in the United States known for serious contamination is McClure located in Scarborough. In the 40s of the last century, there was a large industrial center engaged in the production of radioactive elements in this area. Then it was dismantled, and a part of the waste, including scrap metal, was buried in the ground. Due to non-compliance with nuclear waste measures, the high radioactivity persists in the area now. Complete article

Ramsar, Город Рамсар

Ramsar, Город Рамсар An amazing city of Ramsar is situated in Iran. The place differs much from many radioactive areas of the planet. The main feature of the local radiation lies in the fact that it is natural. Large industrial plants have never been constructed and nuclear tests have been never conducted there. However, radiation level reaches 250 mSv per year. Complete article

Stone Houses in Yangjiang, China

Stone Houses in Yangjiang, China Yangjiang is the high-radiation area in China. Its main feature is a huge number of houses built of sand and clay brick. These building materials act as a source of a high background radiation. The fact is that the extraction of sand and clay for making bricks was carried out in one of the local mountain regions, which is rich in the rare rock element - monazite. Complete article

Infected Apartment in Kramatorsk, Ukraine

Infected Apartment in Kramatorsk, Ukraine One of the most egregious cases of radiation detection occurred in the Ukrainian city of Kramatorsk, which now is known throughout the world. The capsule with the radioactive element cesium-137 was detected within the wall of a residential building. The history of this case goes back to 70s of the last century, when an ampoule with cesium was lost during industrial activities in Karanskyi career. One of the large enterprises mined gravel and crushed stone in this quarry. The vial fell out of a measuring device during the planning stage. Complete article

Church Rock Uranium Mill, Mexico

Church Rock Uranium Mill, Mexico The old factory specializing in uranium enrichment is situated in the Church Rock, US. This plant became known after an accident, as a result of which several tons of a solid radioactive waste were thrown into the atmosphere. The water of the Puerco River was polluted and that greatly expanded the affected zone. The radiation level in the area of ​​the accident is 7 000 times higher than normal. The recent large-scale studies of the river was held in 2003. They showed that the water is still polluted. Complete article
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The most radioactive zones on the planet - interactive map

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