Soviet "Hiroshima" three disasters experienced by the crew of the submarine K-19

• Soviet "Hiroshima" three disasters experienced by the crew of the submarine K-19

The history of the submarine K-19 is dramatic: for the Soviet Union, it became a symbol of nuclear power, a major asset in the "cold war", and for many sailors held her service, - a ruthless killer. cruiser's crew over the years has experienced a terrible catastrophe - the threat of a nuclear explosion, collision with an American submarine and fire. Because of these dramatic events of American directors who directed a documentary about the K-19 submarine called "leaving widows", and the sailors themselves still call it "Hiroshima".

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The submarine was a part of the Northern Fleet in 1960. It was an innovative ship of the Soviet Navy storm giant, who should pass unnoticed to the NATO bases in the exercise "Arctic Circle". It should be noted that the exercises were a turbulent time between the USSR and the West broke open confrontation on the fate of Berlin. Submarine managed to get to the North Atlantic, passing the US radar. It seemed that the operation was successful, but suddenly there was a tragedy. June 4th, 1961 at 4:15 am Captain II rank Nikolai Zateev received alarming information: sensors recorded the overheating fuel rods. The situation was frightening: the problem threatened to blast the submarine equipped with nuclear-tipped missiles. In this case, it affected not only the 149 members of the crew, a massive explosion threatened environmental disaster.

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The decision on liquidation of the accident was taken immediately: aid does not have to wait outside (compounded covert operations), so a team of volunteers took on their own to build a backup cooling system. Members of the crew coped with the problem, but to give a shock dose of radiation. By the time the K-19 has risen to the surface, 14 sailors, took the blow, has already begun to show symptoms of radiation sickness. Eight of them subsequently died suddenly.

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After the accident, it took three years to renovate K-19. Winter 1963 K-19 returned to service, atonement for combat duty. It seemed that hard times are over, the sailors have served successfully on a formidable cruiser. However, six years later, the fate of the crew was again in the balance of the death: during the regular exercise Soviet cruiser collided with an American submarine USS Gato. The Americans took the maneuver K-19 for the ram, and was about to open aimed fire, but the tragedy has prevented the captain torpedo room, to understand the situation.

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fate awaits the crew of K-19 is another terrible ordeal. February 24, 1972 on a submarine emerged a huge fire that engulfed and 8 bays. 26 crew members and two who came to the aid of rescuers were killed - some from carbon monoxide poisoning, while others were burned alive. After the fire was extinguished, the boat was towed to the base, but the story has not ended. Another dozen seamen over 23 days was in those compartments which are arranged behind burnt, their evacuation was impossible because of the high concentration of carbon monoxide. Fortunately, these sailors had survived.

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The first commander of the K-19 cap. 2 rank Nikolai Zateev

History of K-19 ended in 1990, when she was finally decommissioned. In the 2000s, sailors who served on the cruiser, appealed to the leadership with a proposal to the country does not dispose of the ship, and open it a museum-memorial in memory of the battle last K-19, about the deeds that were committed on board of the submarine, in memory of those who saved his own life at the expense of his comrades. However, the requests were not heard: K-19 was cut into scrap metal, in memory of the cuttings remained only installed as a monument at the entrance of the shipyard "Nerpa".

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In a berth in Snezhnogorsk. End of 1990