On the eve of the International Day of Remembrance for the Victims of Radiation Accidents and Catastrophes, Governor Sergei Tsivilev held a solemn meeting with the liquidators of the Chernobyl accident, veterans of the special risk unit and participants in nuclear weapons tests at the Semipalatinsk test site in the Kemerovo Region government administration.
“The liquidators of the accident at the Chernobyl nuclear power plant were the first to experience the full power of the raging peaceful atom. Today the Russian atomic energy system is one of the best and safest in the world, but 35 years ago only the courage and strength of thousands of people who sacrificed their own health and lives helped prevent a global catastrophe. It was a feat for the sake of all mankind. The Kuzbass people were also at the forefront of this struggle. Their example should foster courage and love for the Motherland in the younger generation, ”stressed Sergei Tsivilev.
To eliminate the accident at the Chernobyl nuclear power plant from Kuzbass, more than three thousand civilians were called up – drivers, builders, engineers, doctors and specialists of other professions. To date, about 900 people have survived, of which more than 20 have disabilities.
“35 years have passed since that moment, and every day I think more and more: the main thing is that this never happens again! It was very scary to lose the guys. In war you see the enemy, but here the enemy is invisible, and he is all around. But we did our best, because we were brought up like this: first think about your homeland, and then about yourself, ”said Rasulzhan Sabirzhanov, the liquidator of the Chernobyl accident, deputy chairman of the regional public organization“ Chernobyl ”Union.
Nikolai Kozhemyako from Kuzbass was called up as a reserve lieutenant who studied chemical protection at the military department. In Chernobyl, he served as the commander of a chemical and radiation reconnaissance platoon. The third block of the station was cultivated from a height of 54 m and above, the soil around and settlements. Nikolay Kozhemyako personally performed 19 outputs to the 3rd power unit. For his courage and heroism during the liquidation of the accident, he was awarded the Order of Courage.
“During my military training, I learned what the consequences of a nuclear explosion are, I understood the seriousness of the situation in Chernobyl, but I could not go. Areas of Russia, Ukraine, Belarus and parts of Europe were affected. I still remember the silence. There are no animals, no birds are singing, people have been evacuated, ”says Nikolai Kozhemyako, liquidator of the Chernobyl accident, director of the Mariinsky Polytechnic College.
For an unparalleled feat, an active life position and a great contribution to the patriotic education of youth, nine participants of the solemn meeting were awarded with certificates of honor of the Kuzbass government. Another 20 liquidators were awarded the target premium of the Kuzbass government. Regional medals “For Faith and Goodness” were awarded to eight guests, “For the worthy upbringing of children” and “For honor and courage” – one invited each, “For serving Kuzbass” – five people.
For active public work to protect the rights, interests, social guarantees of Kuzbass residents – participants in the elimination of radiation accidents and catastrophes, a great personal contribution to the patriotic education of citizens, the Governor of Kuzbass gratitude was announced to the chairman of the board of the regional public organization “Union” Chernobyl “Viktor Borodkin and his deputy Rasulzhan Sabirzhanov.
The accident at the Chernobyl nuclear power plant occurred on April 26, 1986. The entire population – more than 115 thousand people – was evacuated from the 30-kilometer exclusion zone. Work on extinguishing the 4th emergency power unit, erecting a protective sarcophagus over it and clearing the affected area took almost five years. In total, over 600 thousand people were involved in the elimination of the accident.