Things that still haunt me: the helicopter pilots who put the initial fires out flew in 120-180C temperatures and pretty much all died of radiation. And the sequence that starts about here:
Where they are picking up radioactive materials by hand and throwing it off the roof next to the reactor because the robots they were trying to use all break down. Even 1 hour of exposure was deadly so they rotated through shifts, and the guys who did it were called "Bio Robots"
It has some of the same footage as the sequence in your link to t=3430, but there is a key difference: Chernobyl 3828 is about the people. The psychology of the cleanup was complicated. Some people ran while others faced the danger and accepted a "red badge of courage" because if they didn't, someone else would have to go in their place.
Or did they have lists of "expendables" for such emergencies, which would have been sorted by profession directly on-situ? Surely it wasn't completely random...
EDIT: hey downvoters, these are simple questions that help paint a better picture.
"they wouldn't need to go all the way to another region to get them"
It was a common practice for Soviets to get people from far regions to do dirty jobs, because it's easier to hide nasty deeds this way and prevent rumors from spreading. As an example, most of Lithuanians served in far regions of Siberia while at the same time most of soldiers stationed here were from Mongolia and the like.
Not much of an issue in the Soviet Union, though.
"- According to Vyacheslav Grishin of the Chernobyl Union, the main organization of liquidators, "25,000 of the Russian liquidators are dead and 70,000 disabled, about the same in Ukraine, and 10,000 dead in Belarus and 25,000 disabled", which makes a total of 60,000 dead (10% of the 600 000, liquidators) and 165,000 disabled.
- A UNSCEAR report places the total confirmed deaths from radiation at 64 as of 2008.
- Estimates of the number of deaths potentially resulting from the accident vary enormously: the World Health Organization (WHO) suggest it could reach 4,000"
According to the WHO report from 2006 (which is stupidly in the form that can be neither searched nor copy-pasted, I guess intentionally!) 600,000 persons did receive the official certificates that they worked as the liquidators there: around 200,000 people worked during the first two years, others afterwards. See page 2.
The same report on page 107:
"The RNMDR data indicate that 4.6% of the Russian emergency workers fatalities that occurred during the 12 years following the accident can be attributed to radiation-induced diseases."
I remembered distinctly when it happened, well when it was anounced on TV on evening news. It was really mentioned in passing -- oh by the way, there was incident at Chernobyl, a quick flash or some white smoke coming out in the distance and then ... sports.
My dad knew it was something more than that and said something like "Oh shit, this could be really bad". People have learned when they published something as small in the news, they would multiply by some factor to get an idea how bad it really was.
Then something really bizare happened. Refuges had started to stream into different cities. And for some strange reason, they were shunned. Others somehow thought these survivors were contaminated, cursed, builty or what have you. So instead of being embraced and helped, they found themselves trying to hide who they are and where they came from.
There is an excellent book that tackles this very subject named "All that is Solid Melts Into Air" by Darragh McKeon. I highly recommend the book and it's not too long - 200 pages give or take.
It chronicles a bit of the disaster as well as the lives of some people that live near it as well as rescue workers called in to respond to it.
Obviously not directly applicable but in a crisis it might be the kind of mistake people would make.
Thanks for that!
Either I'm about to get schooled on physics or I pretty much can't trust anything said in this documentary (cool film footage notwithstanding).