Union Carbide Disaster: Bhopal, India
On December 3, 1984 just three miles from the City of Bhopal.. An American owned Union Carbide Pesticide Plant leaked Toxic gas in to the air killing over Hundreds of people right away. Mr. Y P Gokhale, managing director of Union Carbide in India said, “That a Methyl isocyanate gas (MIC) had escaped when a valve in the plant’s underground storage tank broke under pressure. The leak was caused by a series of mechanical and human errors in the pesticide producing plant. For a full hour the plant’s personnel and safety equipment failed to detect the massive leak, and when the alarm was sound most of the harm was already done. What was worse was that local health officials had not been educated on the toxicity of the chemicals used at the Union Carbide plant therefore there were no emergency procedures in place to protect the people of Bhopal. Panic broke out in the city of Bhopal and the areas surrounding more then tens of thousands of people attempted to escape. More then 20,000 people required hospital symptoms including swollen eyes, frothing at the mouth and breathing difficulties. There we thousands of dead animals just covering the streets of Bhopal. The Indian government sued Union Carbide in a civil case and settled in 1989 for 470 million dollars. The Union Carbide which shut down its Bhopal plant after the disaster has yet to clean up the site completely. More then thousands of people died instantly and over 2,000 people died during the aftermath. In 1999 a voluntary group in Bhopal which believed not enough had been done to help the victims, filed a lawsuite in the United States claiming that Union Carbide violated international law and human rights. In November of 2000 Warren Anderson was charged of “Culpable homicide” for cost cutting at the plant which is alleged to have compromised safety Standards. In 2004 the Indian Supreme Court approved a compensation plan drawn up to help more the 570,000 Victims of...
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