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The spread of radiation and caesium across Europe



The disaster released at least 100 times more radiation than the atom bombs dropped on Nagasaki and Hiroshima.

Much of the fallout was deposited close to Chernobyl, in parts of Belarus, Ukraine and Russia. More than 350,000 people resettled away from these areas, but about 5.5 million remain.

Contamination with caesium and strontium is of particular concern, as it will be present in the soil for many years.

After the accident traces of radioactive deposits were found in nearly every country in the northern hemisphere.

But wind direction and uneven rainfall left some areas more contaminated than their immediate neighbours.

Scandinavia was badly affected and there are still areas of the UK where farms face post-Chernobyl controls.

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