“A hero is somebody who voluntarily walks into the unknown.”

–Tom Hanks

To contain the disaster of Chernobyl, army and scientists improvised. Hundreds of helicopters flew over the nuclear plant, to drop bags of sand into the gaping hole of the exploded plant. Tons of sand was poured in, to limit the discharge but this caused further undesirable effect as more than 600 pilots irradiated and it raised the heat in the reactor. The radioactive magma could have broken through concrete slabs and reached the basement of the plant which was filled with water. It could have instigated an even more dreadful disaster, the radioactive magma mixed with water, could cause a thermonuclear bomb said to be 100 times more powerful than the ones dropped on Japan.

The only solution was to dive into the plant’s basement, swim through the radioactive potage to find the drain sluices and operate them manually. Three of the plant’s workers volunteered to this daunting task; Alexei Ananenko, Valeri Bezpalov and Boris Baranov. They finally accomplish the suicidal task but they all expire in the following weeks but a critical situation still remained. Everything around the plant, the earth, water & animals gets polluted by the high radioactivity. To clean up this zone, half a million man were employed who risked their lives to clear off the debris, to raze houses, bury waste or to slaughter animals. Also an access tunnel is dug to save the ground water from being contaminated. Half of these people did not make till the age of 40.