On that day, a reactor at the Chernobyl Nuclear Power Plant near the city of Pripyat, in the north of what was then the Ukrainian SSR, overheated and caused a massive explosion that released extremely high levels of radiation into the air.
HBO’s five-part historical miniseries, which stars Jared Harris (The Crown, Mad Men), Stellan Skarsgard (Return to Montauk), Emily Watson (Little Women), and Paul Ritter (Cold Feet) explored the events of the Chernobyl disaster, the clean-up afterwards, and the devastating effects that continue to linger.
The epilogue at the end provided some answers about the aftermath, including the fact that the three men who drained the pool underneath the reactor known as the “Suicide Squad,” all survived, and the pregnant woman, Lyudmilla Ignatenko, not only survived, but went on to have a son.
There are trips you can take to Chernobyl, and even a website for eager tourists to book a (strictly regulated) tour, with the studio guaranteeing “absolute radiation safety” for tourists.
The tour, which starts at about $99, includes essential radiation survival skills, thematic routes, and a bird’s eye view of the zone.
The radioactive isotopes still in the atmosphere are reportedly tolerable for limited periods of time with no adverse effects, reports the International Atomic Energy Agence (IAEA).