New footage captured by drones last week showed the damage done by the huge wildfires that ravaged the area around the former nuclear power station in Chernobyl, according to a report from ABCNews. The fires have destroyed swathes of habitat and several tourist sites. The footage shows forests of charred trees and several villages where virtually every house completely burned to the ground.
On Monday, Ukraine’s state emergency service confirmed that more than 1,000 firefighters were still operating in the area to fully extinguish the fires in the zone.
The fires that ignited at the beginning of April spread across thousands of acres inside the “Exclusion Zone,” an approximately 1,000-square-mile area that is thickly forested and scattered with abandoned villages and Soviet-era installations which surrounds the former nuclear power station in northern Ukraine. The fires came within less than a mile of the station itself.
Hundreds of firefighters struggled to contain the fires, but managed to bring them under control after they were aided by rains two weeks ago. However, some areas still continue to smolder.
The station itself was unharmed, but the flames still wrought wide destruction on the unique historical locations and natural environment inside the zone.