Bhopal tragedy, a major accident of 20th century: UN

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The United Nations has termed the Bhopal Gas tragedy of 1984 as one of the major industrial accidents that the world has seen in the 20th century.

The report – Safety and Health at the Heart of the Future of Work – Building on 100 Years of Experience – published by the International Labour Organisation (ILO), said that the Bhopal tragedy was a major industrial accident since 1919.

The report says that as many as six lakh workers and inhabitants nearby were affected when about thirty tons of Methyl Isocyanate (MIC) gas was released from a pesticide plant in Bhopal in Madhya Pradesh.

The report also said that about 15,000 deaths have happened over the years because of the gas tragedy. The ILO report also states that toxic material remained in the region and thousands of people are affected with respiratory diseases.

The major industrial accidents after 1919 as published in the report are as follows;
Flixbourough: The disaster happened in 1974. Twenty eight workers were killed and as many as 36 workers were injured in the cyclohexane vapour cloud explosion in the month of June. The explosion is slated to have because of poor Occupational Safety and Health management system.

Seveso: The explosion of a chemical manufacturing unit in Seveso in Italy is considered to be the first major chemical disaster in the world. In the 1976 explosion, doxins was released in major quantity.

Phillips: In the explosion in the chemical complex at Pasadena, United States, as many as 23 workers were killed and about 300 injured. The disaster happened in 1989.
Chernobyl: One of the disastrous nuclear power explosions at Chernobyl in Ukraine. It is estimated that it released radiation that is considered to be a hundred times more than the radiation caused by the atomic bombs dropped in Hiroshima and Nagasaki.

Chile mining: this happened in 2010. Thirty three miners were trapped in a North Chile mine for about two months after the exit of the mine closed accidentally.

Fukushima: In 2011, a series of explosions and fires resulting in radiation release was experienced in Fukushima nuclear plants. This was caused because of Tsunami and a major earthquake.

Rana Plaza: As many as 1100 people were killed and scores injured when the Rana Plaza building in Dhaka collapsed. Five garment factories were functioning from the building.

The Vale Dam Disaster: The dam disaster happened in 2019 in Brumadinho in Brazil. Three hundred people were killed in the disaster.

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