The Chernobyl disaster has been brought back to the forefront of people's minds in recent weeks, thanks to the success of the HBO and Sky Atlantic show, Chernobyl, which gave a much-lauded dramatised account of what happened on the 26 April 1986.
While the aforementioned series did paint quite an accurate depiction of what really happened in Chernobyl and the impact it had in the years that followed, Sky's The Real Chernobyl documentary digs a little deeper. The doc - which aired on Tuesday, 18th of June - has received widespread acclaim and has since been made available on YouTube.
Among those they speak to are Nikolai Kaplin, an army officer involved in the clean up, and former Deputy Director of the Chernobyl Plant, Sergei Parashin. At the time, Parashin was secretary of the Communist Party plant committee. He explained what unfolded that night:
When you hear somebody telling you that the reactor exploded, you cannot believe it. The reactors never exploded before. An accident may have taken place, the fuel may have melted, water may have evaporated, but the reactors never exploded.
Then we get the report that the reactor is gone. And we didn't get this report at once, it was only some time later. So we were sitting here, making guesses what had happened. This took a lot of time.
The full programme can be watched below:
Meanwhile, the show's creator, Criag Mazin, has pleaded with influencers to refrain from taking insensitive selfies when visiting the Chernobyl plant and the nearby abandoned town of Pripyat:
It's wonderful that #ChernobylHBO has inspired a wave of tourism to the Zone of Exclusion. But yes, I've seen the photos going around.
If you visit, please remember that a terrible tragedy occurred there. Comport yourselves with respect for all who suffered and sacrificed.