Three Mile Island Meltdown

1350 Words6 Pages
The Three Mile Island disaster occurred on March 28, 1979. The nuclear plant, in the small community of Middleton, PA, experienced a partial meltdown in the Unit 2 reactor. Many factors contributed to the meltdown. Human error, mechanical failure, and communication breakdowns all contributed, as well as, exacerbated the disaster. Over the course of approximately one week, many theories, projections, announcements and media speculation led to widespread public fear and mistrust. Many experts considered the disaster at Three Mile Island to be the worst disaster in privately owned nuclear energy history within the United States. Estimations of radiation leakage showed a wide range of amounts. This is still a point of contention, as no…show more content…
Many birds were found in the area, dead on the ground. Research indicated a higher level of pets born with birth defects and a lower birth rate among livestock for years after the disaster. The Three Mile Island disaster also affected the human population. Human health impacts divides experts on both sides. The nuclear experts claim that not one life was lost because of the disaster. They also claim that people within the fallout area were subjected to a total amount of radiation less than an x-ray. Other experts claim that if there were consequential health impacts to humans, the United States Supreme Court would agree to review at least one of the class action lawsuits filed. Local residents claimed a myriad of ailments including tumors, cancers, breathing problems and even hair loss. They bolster their argument using the many miscommunications, half-truths and outright lies told by both the nuclear power industry and the involved government agencies. At one point during the ordeal, women, infants and toddlers were evacuated from Middletown. Further supporting the claim that the nuclear industry knows of the ongoing health concerns, part owners and direct operator, Met-Ed paid out several settlements always with a non-disclosure clause in the settlement. Studies and research conducted more recently showed an increased amount of stress and depressive disorders amongst residents. Cancer clusters and birth defects were found
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