This Week In History
A new story every Monday with quiz
28 March 1979
Nuclear Reactor Melts Down In The USA
Deadly radiation escapes from a US nuclear power plant, endangering nearly 2,000,000 people.
In 1979, a reactor at the Three Mile Island nuclear power plant in Pennsylvania, USA, suffered a partial meltdown. Gamma radiation was emitted and spread throughout the area, potentially affecting up to 2,000,000 people. Many who were exposed later suffered various forms of cancer, and many tried to claim personal injury against the owner of the plant, Metropolitan Edison Company. The company was found not liable in all cases.
nuclear reactor (noun): a device used to cause and control nuclear reactions
melt down (verb): overheat and cause the release of harmful radiation
radiation (noun): energy travelling through space as rays or waves
endanger (verb): bring someone or something closer to trouble or risk
expose (verb): leave open to harm
liable (adjective ): responsible for damage
The partial meltdown of a reactor at the Three Mile Island nuclear power plant led to
Many people who developed cancer after being exposed to the radiation sued Metropolitan Edison Company for damages, and compensation was paid
Radiation that escapes from a nuclear power plant when a reactor overheats and melts down
Researched and written for EnglishClub by Matt Errey