Chernobyl disaster - the destruction of April 26, 1986 fourth unit of the Chernobyl nuclear power plant, located on Ukrainian territory (at that time - the Ukrainian SSR). The destruction was of an explosive nature, the reactor was completely destroyed, and the environment have thrown a large quantity of radioactive substances. The accident is regarded as the largest of its kind in the history of nuclear power, as alleged by the number of casualties caused by its effects on both people and economic damage. At the time of the Chernobyl catastrophe was the most powerful in the Soviet Union. The actual number of deaths during the first 3 months is estimated at 31-th person, long-term effects of radiation, identified over the next 15 years, have killed 60 to 80 people.
In contrast to the bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki, the explosion resembled a very powerful "dirty bomb" - the main damaging factors become radioactive contamination. The radioactive cloud from the accident took place on the European part of USSR, Eastern Europe and Scandinavia. Approximately 60% of the radioactive fallout fell on the territory of Belarus. About 200 000 people were evacuated from areas affected by pollution.
The Chernobyl accident was an event of great social and political significance for the Soviet Union, and it left a definite imprint on the course of an investigation of its causes. The approach to the interpretation of the facts and circumstances surrounding the accident has changed over time and in full consensus still does not.