Alexei Ananenko (1959)

he emptied Chernobyl's safety pools, preventing a second explosion

Brilliant engineer and technologist of the Soviet nuclear industry, in Chernobyl together with Valeriy Bezpalov and Boris Baranov prevented a second nuclear explosion after the one that engulfed reactor 4 of the plant on April 26, 1986.

Having collaborated in the construction of the Chernobyl power plant, he knew precisely where the water relief valves were located in the safety pools under the reactors. The latter had to be emptied manually to prevent the reactor above them, melting at 1666 degrees, from collapsing to pieces in the water, causing a series of large explosions of steam at very high temperatures, which would have dispersed at a distance of thousands of km additional amounts of radiation.

Knowing that he was risking death, he immersed himself in the contaminated water of the pools and together with his companions unscrewed the valves. This gesture prevented the Chernobyl nuclear disaster from turning into an even worse one.

Today Alexei does not live as a hero, but with a small pension. When interviewed he says: "I only did my duty".

Gardens that honour Alexei Ananenko

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