Haytagh community of about 3,000 inhabitants in Armavir Region, Armenia, is about 5-6 km from the Armenian Nuclear Power Plant (ANPP). Haytagh is devoid of the minimum basket of medications that can save lives in case of an accident. The lack of necessary supplies is the lack of awareness of the local population about the measures and steps to be taken in the event of a nuclear accident. According to the municipality, about ten people from Haytagh work at the ANPP today.
At Haytagh Secondary School, EcoLur was told that this was the first visit to their community in regard to the nuclear power plant. It turned out there about thirty gas masks at the school, but they were useless. "Probably no child will wear them because it's been thousands of years since they had been taken out of the military unit," they said at school.
The school staff does not consider this knowledge sufficient to organize self-defense in the event of a radiation hazard. “Neither of us knows anything about our rights or our responsibilities. No one has ever covered these questions."
Semi-destroyed basements and large windows with halls as hiding places
In the event of a nuclear accident, the residents of Haytagh may shelter in the basements of their homes, school staff and students in a recently renovated gym and event hall.
The basement of the community culture house could have served as a shelter, but it was destroyed, and the entrance doors were missing. There are two alarm bells in the community, one in the village administration and the other in the school. Both do not work. There are also no guiding posters, the evacuation plan is not posted in visible places.
The problem of pond water
There is also an unsolved problem in drinking water today. There are faucets in the streets, but the residents have no drinking water in their homes, and they have to carry water. They use wells for irrigation and domestic purposes. “There are 18 artesian wells dug in the community, but 6 only operate. There is no power, no transformers to work. We have gravity water in the streets, but it would be better if the water was connected the houses. We bathe with the water taken from the wells, 90% of village houses have no tap water ... Wells are used for domestic purposes. We dig at the depth of 4m and good water is available. With the lowering of the levels, we also deepen the wells,” the residents said.
14:18 February 14, 2020