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‘Voices of Chernobyl’: Survivors’ Stories

Twenty years ago this month, a routine maintenance test at the Chernobyl nuclear plant in northern Ukraine veered wildly out of control.

Here’s an excellent story by NPR about Chernobyl and its survivors. They have more stories as well:
Chernobyl Copes with Fallout, 20 Years Later
At Chernobyl, Building a Shelter for a Shelter
Covering the Chernobyl Crisis

When news of Chernobyl reached the US, I was getting ready for a trip to Germany. Mom was worried, but I never gave it a second thought. After arriving in Germany, I was going up the stairs to my host’s apartment and noticed that people were laving their shoes outside their doors. Was that a tradition? “No,” she said. “People are worried about radiation.” Until that moment, the danger had seemed so far away.

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