Imagine going to bed one day and getting up the next day to find that pretty much everyone is dead or almost dead due to the negligence of a Multi National who came to your town to run a dangerous business in the name of contributing or improving your local economy.Union Carbide did just that!
Bhopal disaster also known as Bhopal Gas Tragedy was one of the world’s worst industrial catastrophes. It occurred on the night of December 2–3, 1984 at the Union Carbide India Limited (UCIL) pesticide plant in Bhopal, Madhya Pradesh, India. A leak of methyl isocyanate gas and other chemicals from the plant resulted in the exposure of hundreds of thousands of people. Estimates vary on the death toll. The official immediate death toll was 2,259 and the government of Madhya Pradesh has confirmed a total of 3,787 deaths related to the gas release. Others estimate 3,000 died within weeks and another 8,000 have since died from gas-related diseases. A government affidavit in 2006 stated the leak caused 558,125 injuries including 38,478 temporary partial and approximately 3,900 severely and permanently disabling injuries.
I was not aware of this tragedy till recently when one of my lecturer’s brought it to my attention. I had to find out more and it was shocking! Bet many of us don’t know about it and i think we should! Large multi national’s move their operations to small towns , miles away from their parent company to run these dangerous businesses. The un-suspecting residence of this town are the victims when they were effectively killed off their loved , their hopes and their chance of survival.
Chronology of Events :
Inside the Plant
- 21:00 Water cleaning of pipes starts. Water enters tank 610, reaction starts.
- 22:30 Gases are emitted from the vent gas scrubber tower.
- 00:30 The large siren sounds and is turned off.
- 00:50 The siren is heard within the plant area. The workers escape
- 22:30 First sensations due to the gases are felt—suffocation, cough, burning eyes and vomiting.
- 1:00 Police are alerted. Residents of the area evacuate. Union Carbide director denies any leak.
- 2:00 The first people reached Hospital. Symptoms include visual impairment and blindness, respiratory difficulties, frothing at the mouth, and vomiting.
- 2:10 The alarm is heard outside the plant.
- 7:00 A police loudspeaker broadcasts: “Everything is normal”.
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