Chernobyl Exclusion Zone

On the morning of April 26, 1986 at the Chernobyl Nuclear Power Plant in the USSR, a test was being conducted on Reactor 4. The test was to check a new safety procedure to assist the operation of the system in the event of a loss of electric power to the plant. Through a tragic sequence of events triggered by the test, the reactor core became extremely unstable, eventually resulting in explosions that tore through the containing roof and released radioactive material into the air. The poisoned air would carry as far as western Europe and up into Scandinavia, with the majority of the fallout raining down over the area around the Power Plant and the nearby city of Pripyat, which was home to the workers and young families of the Plant.

The next day, hundreds of buses arrived in Pripyat with an order of an immediate (but temporary) evacuation. Over 49,000 inhabitants would leave their homes (unknowingly), forever. In the days following, evacuations continued to over 70 settlements & villages within an area that would be come to be known as The Exclusion Zone.

I traveled to the Zone to learn more of the history of the world's worst nuclear disaster and to photograph the ghosts that remain as Nature works to reclaim and recover from the hand of man. Some of the images I took tell the story of Chernobyl, however these images presented here are more of an artistic nature; intimate portraits of those forgotten in the Zone

I invite you to explore the Gallery. Simpy click on the thumbnail image to view that image. To purchase an image, you'll find choices below each photograph for different size and finish options.

My shooting attire when entering buildings where the asbestos was particularly bad

The following is a short slideshow of the Chernobyl Exclusion Zone including many more photographs of the area that I took whilst I was there