Not only Beirut: 11 terrible human-induced disasters
Sometimes disasters happen by pure chance. Nevertheless, it often happens that the wrong decisions of people who could not correctly assess the situation at the right time lead to disaster. Edition "Vesti" has compiled a list of 11 shocking disasters that resulted from a human decision.
11. The collapse of the liner Costa Concordia
The Italian cruise liner Costa Concordia sank in the Tyrrhenian Sea near Giglio Island off the coast of the Italian region of Tuscany on the night of January 14 2012. At the time of the tragedy, there were more than 4,2 thousands of people on the ship, 32 of them died.
A giant liner 290 m long with 17 decks, which accommodate 1,5 cabins, a two-level fitness area with an area of more than two thousand square meters, a concert hall, a 4D cinema, an art gallery and a small library, as well as casinos, boutiques, restaurants and bars, left the port of Civitavecchia on January 13, 2012 on a cruise in the Mediterranean and was heading for Savona.
A few hours after departure, while the passengers were dining in restaurants, the Costa Concordia ran aground, causing the ship to have a hole on the left side, which was about 70 m long.
Evacuation of people from the liner continued throughout the night. Coast guard vessels and lifeboats took part in it, a helicopter was also involved.
During the rescue operation, many passengers remained locked in the liner's cabins. In addition, at the time of the accident, several passengers fell overboard.
Initially, it was reported that as a result of the collapse of the liner, three people died, but every day this figure increased.
The course of the search and rescue operation was repeatedly suspended due to the deterioration of weather conditions, ship motions and increased danger to rescuers.
In the evening of 14 on January 2012, the Italian authorities announced the arrest of the captain of the Costa Concordia cruise ship Franco Skettino.
Representatives of the shipowner company stated that Skettino arbitrarily decided to deviate from the intended course. The captain gave the command to come as close as possible to the island of Giglio, to please the chief steward of the ship, a native of those places.
The prosecutor's office of the Tuscan province of Grossetto opened a criminal case on the fact of shipwreck and death.
Italian law enforcement authorities after interrogation detained Skettino on suspicion of unintentional murder, and also that he left the vessel until the evacuation of passengers was completed.
15 January 2012, divers removed a Costa Concordia recorder. Its decoding confirmed reports that the captain started evacuation too late and did not send a distress signal (the coast guard herself had contacted the ship in distress), which delayed the start of the rescue operation.
10. First crash of Airbus A320, France
The A320 crash in Absheim is a plane crash that occurred on Sunday, June 26, 1988.
The Air France airliner A320-111 of Air France was supposed to perform a demonstration flight (ACF 296 Q Paris-Mulhouse flight) at a low altitude as part of an air show at the Mulhouse-Absaym airdrome, thereby introducing the A320 to the public for the first time.
But during the landing, the plane was at a critically low altitude and in front of hundreds of spectators crashed into the forest at the end of the runway.
The crash killed the passenger 3, another 50 were injured. This was the first disaster in the history of the Airbus A320. Flight Commander Michel Asslin was jailed for 10 months.
9. Disaster at the Wyont Dam, Italy
The tragedy at Vajont Dam is a vivid example of how the combination of many unobtrusive natural factors, human mistakes and elementary human greed can lead to a catastrophe with a terrible outcome.
The causes of the accident at the Wyont Dam can be roughly divided into two categories: "technical" and "human".
It all started with the fact that people did not quite choose the right place for the construction of the dam, then it turned out that this place was geologically unstable (here there were often weak earthquakes and landslides).
But the company that built the dam, turned a blind eye and continued to work, as it promised a lot of money.
Finally, the rainy summer of 1963 came, and by autumn, due to heavy rainfall, a landslide occurred in the area where the dam was located.
And not just a landslide - a part of the Monte Tok Mountain, which filled the bowl of the reservoir, slipped into the water, and a huge amount of water literally spilled out of the dam.
So the immediate cause of the tragedy is a monstrous landslide, the occurrence of which was due to the geological features of the terrain and heavy rains. For the sake of their own benefits, people assured that there was no danger.
In just seven minutes, the water produced a monstrous scale of destruction. The wave completely destroyed five villages in the valley of the Piave River (Villanova, Longarone, Piragio, Rivalta and Faz), and also subjected several other settlements to serious destruction.
In streams of mud, stones, and water, people died from 1900 to 2500 (some sources say there are thousands of 3 victims).
8. Disaster of the ship Queen of the North, Canada
In 2006, the Queen of the North ferryboat deviated from its usual route along the coast of British Columbia, ran into pitfalls and quickly sank.
Thanks to the extremely timely assistance of the rescuers and especially the residents of the Indian fishing village, most of the passengers and crew (a total of 99 people) were saved.
Only two passengers died - more precisely, they were missing. Probably, their remains rest on the seabed with the ferry.
The ship's navigator Karl Lilgert was arrested and convicted, after which he was convicted of 4 a year in prison.
He was found guilty of criminal negligence, which led to the death of people.
7. Chernobyl disaster, USSR
The Chernobyl accident - the destruction on April 26, 1986 of the fourth power unit of the Chernobyl nuclear power plant, located near the city of Pripyat in Ukraine.
The destruction was explosive in nature, the reactor was completely destroyed, and a large amount of radioactive substances were released into the environment.
The accident is regarded as the largest of its kind in the entire history of atomic energy, both in terms of the estimated number of people killed and affected by its consequences, and in terms of economic damage. 134 people suffered from radiation sickness of varying severity.
More than 115 thousand people were evacuated from the 30-kilometer zone. Significant resources were mobilized to eliminate the consequences, more than 600 thousand people took part in eliminating the consequences of the accident.
During the first three months after the accident, 31 people died, another 19 deaths from 1987 to 2004 can presumably be attributed to its direct consequences.
High doses of people, mostly from emergency workers and liquidators, have caused or may cause 4 thousands of additional deaths from long-term effects of radiation.
Nevertheless, these figures are significantly less than the number of victims attributed to the Chernobyl disaster by public opinion.
Initially, it was stated that in the process of preparing and conducting the experiment, the operating personnel made a number of violations and mistakes, and it was these actions that became the main cause of the accident.
However, then this point of view was revised and it turned out that most of these actions were not violations or did not affect the development of the accident.
6. The crash of Boeing 747 near Tokyo, Japan
The crash of Boeing 747 near Tokyo is one of the largest aviation accidents in the world.
On August 12, 1985, a Boeing 747SR-46 of Japan Air Lines (JAL) made a domestic flight JAL 123 on the Tokyo - Osaka route, but 12 minutes after takeoff lost its vertical tail stabilizer.
The crew kept the unguided aircraft in the air for 32 minutes, but it crashed into Otsutaka mountain, 112 km from Tokyo. Of the 524 people on board (509 passengers and 15 crew members), only 4 survived.
In the process of repairing, the technical conditions stipulated by Boeing were not met, according to which it was prescribed to reinforce the damaged halves of the bulkhead with a single plate amplifier, fixed with three rows of rivets.
Conducting repair equipment instead of installing a single amplifier with three rows of rivets used two separate reinforcing elements, one of which was secured with a double row of rivets, and the second just a single one.
Under the influence of alternating loads during the take-off-landing cycles, the metal 0,9 cm thick at the drilling sites gradually collapsed and eventually failed.
When climbing on a fatal flight, the weakened pressure bulkhead could not cope with the pressure and collapsed.
At the same time he interrupted the pipelines of hydraulic systems. The air escaped from the passenger compartment under high pressure entered the cavity of the vertical tail stabilizer, which was not designed for such a load.
This led to the detachment of the stabilizer and damage to the horizontal tail, as a result, the plane became virtually uncontrollable.
5. Collapse of a Rana Plaza Building, Bangladesh
The collapse of the eight-story Rana Plaza building in the city of Savar was 24 on April 2013 of the year at 08: 45 local time. The search for the bodies was stopped by 13 in May; 1 129 people were reportedly killed in the crash, and about 2 500 people were injured.
About 2500 people were rescued from the rubble. Dozens of the recovered unidentified bodies were buried in mass graves without identification.
On the eve of the incident, on April 23, large cracks were found on the facade of the building - it was ordered to evacuate people from it and close all institutions in the building.
The order was obeyed by the bank and almost all the shops of Rana Plaza, located on the lower floors, while clothing companies continued their work.
The next day, at morning rush hour, the building collapsed, only the first floor survived. According to the President of the Bangladesh Garment Manufacturers and Exporters Association, there were 3 workers in the building at the time.
Among the dead, which at the end of the search work, there were 1 127 people, many workers and their children.
On April 25, a criminal case was opened against the owner of the building, Sohel Rani, and the owners of five clothing factories inside.
On April 26, Bangladesh’s Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina signed an arrest warrant for Rani and four clothing store owners.
Two of them were arrested several hours later, Rani himself was hiding from justice, but on April 28 he was arrested in Benapol, on the border with India.
4. Sampun Shopping Center Collapse, South Korea
The Sampun Shopping Center collapsed on June 29, 1995 in the Seochhogu District in Seoul, Republic of Korea. It is the largest peacetime disaster in South Korean history, with 502 deaths and 937 injuries.
In 1994, the financial sector, located on the second floor opposite the sports center, was moved to the first floor, and on January 5, 1994, a bookstore was opened in its place.
Due to the weight of a huge number of books, cracks began to appear in the lobby of the sports center, they gradually expanded. As a result, the bookstore was closed on March 3, 1995, but this did not stop the growth of cracks.
And already in April 1995, cracks appeared in the ceiling above the restaurants in the northern wing. Since May, sand began to pour out of them, and the floor of the 5th floor slowly sagged.
Lim Hyun Zhe, the supervisor, the representative of the side that blocked the gas, spoke of the need to evacuate people and urgent repairs.
Engineer Lee Hak Soo expressed the opinion that the crisis can be overcome by ongoing repairs without stopping the shopping center. The management leaned towards this version, then began to discuss the necessary measures. An hour after that, Lim went to his office for drawings.
The technical specialists of Sampun closed the second floor of the sports center and the passage through it according to the plan for the repair of the central hall.
In 17: 50 is not a guide, but the staff of the second and third floors started shouting and calling for help. These cries were not heard below, and even more so on the underground four floors.
At about 17:57 pm, the roof collapsed and the air conditioning systems found themselves on the already congested floor of the 5th floor. Then the main supporting columns collapsed. Within 20 seconds, the southern wing completely collapsed, killing 502 people and adding debris to another 1500.
3. Blast in halifax, canada
An explosion in Halifax occurred on December 6, 1917 in the harbor of the Canadian city of Halifax. The French military transport ship Mont Blanc, loaded with almost one explosive (TNT, pyroxylin and picric acid), collided with the Norwegian ship Imo.
A fire started on the ship, resulting in an explosion and a chain reaction of other explosives on board, leaving the port and much of the city completely destroyed. About 2 thousand people died under the rubble of buildings and because of the fires that emerged after the explosion. Approximately 9 thousand people were injured, 400 lost their sight.
The international court, considering the claims of both shipping companies, came to the conclusion that the captains of “Imo” (killed in the explosion) and “Mont Blanc” were equally to blame for the collision. However, the French government did not recognize this decision.
2. Disaster of the ferry Herald of Free Enterprise, Belgium
On March 6, 1987, an English passenger ferry, leaving Zeebrugge, capsized on board. 197 people died.
On the evening of March 6, 1987, in the Belgian port of Zeebrugge, when the passengers had already taken their places in the cabins of the ship, the loading of cars on two car decks was completed.
To speed up the loading of cars on the upper deck, ballast (more than 300 tons) was accepted into the bow tanks, and since the ballast pump had a small capacity, only 40 tons had time to pump out half an hour before leaving the port.
Therefore, the ferry left for the voyage with a large trim on the bow. Later, investigating the causes of the crash, scientists and specialists will establish that a load weighing 500 tons with a permissible load of 400 tons was taken onto the upper car deck, and the average draft was exceeded by 13 cm.
However, these factors were not decisive. The chain of violations, negligence and gross mistakes was based on the so-called human factor.
Panic overflowed in the crowded bars, restaurants, duty-free shops, cabins and decks. Those who were at the open portholes, just thrown into the sea.
Some of the passengers managed to fit on the stern protruding from the water. 408 people were saved from the icy embrace of the North Sea. By the time the rescue boats arrived, 50 corpses were already floating on the surface, and another 123 drowned were removed from the Herald of Free Enterprise's interior.
1. Tragedy at the Hyatt Regency Hotel, USA
The collapse of the hanging galleries at the Hyatt Regency is a man-made disaster that occurred in Kansas City on July 17, 1981.
In the hotel's atrium, two hanging galleries collapsed on people attending a 1940s-style dance party.
As a result of the disaster, 114 people were killed, 216 were injured of varying severity.
Until 2001, it was the deadliest destruction of a man-made object in US history; more people died only in the 2001 collapse of the south tower of the World Trade Center in New York.
The cause of the disaster was mistakes in the design of the gallery structure, as a result of which the fastenings of the upper gallery could not bear the weight of the structures and the people standing on them. The galleries caved in and collapsed.
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