Lessons in the "greatdisasters" Category

It was like the Titanic!

A luxury winter cruise in the Mediterranean turned into a horrific scramble for survival for 4,000 people as the giant 114,500-tonne ocean liner Costa Concordia hit rocks off the coast of Italy on Friday evening. Survivors said, “It was like the Titanic”.

The drama began when the cruise ship hit some rocks, which tore a 300ft gash along the lower side of it. The cruise ship was near the tiny Tuscan island of Giglio, off the west coast of Italy, north of Rome. Holidaymakers, who were enjoying the last day of their vacation, suddenly faced the horrifying ordeal of abandoning ship. Panic soon spread as they realised how serious the situation on board actually was.

The ship soon lurched to starboard throwing passengers all over the place. There were desperate scenes on board as people fought to survive. The ship soon flipped on its side half submerged in the sea.

Category: Italy / Holidays / Cruise Ship Disaster

The Great Hungarian Toxic Disaster

Hungary’s recent toxic sludge spill is the country’s worst ever environmental disaster. On the 4th October a reservoir holding deadly waste burst after heavy rains, releasing at least a million cubic metres of toxic red muddy water. It was like a mini tsunami and devastated three nearby villages.

The Hungarian government immediately declared a state of emergency in three counties. Seven people were killed; 150 were injured, with hundreds suffering toxic burns. The deadly sludge came from an aluminium plant reservoir. The toxic muddy waste is a waste product from the refinement of bauxite to alumina, the material used to manufacture aluminium.

The red mud contained an oxide that gave it a red colour. It also contained heavy metals, such as lead, that have a caustic affect on the skin and was slightly radioactive. The toxic water killed fish, and many other life forms. It made the immediate area look like the red planet Mars. The smell from the spill was also pretty bad.

Category: Europe / Hungary / Toxic Leak