April 27, 1986 – a day for the history books. The most disastrous nuclear power plant accident took place in Chernobyl on April 26th. By April 27th, there was no confirmation to the outside world, but radiation monitors in Sweden and Finland were showing unusually high levels of radiation; in some cases three times their normal levels. It wouldn’t be until days later that the location of this horrific accident was confirmed to the area in the Ukraine known as Chernobyl.
According to reports from Stockholm, the first indication of a problem came when officials decided to evacuate 600 workers from a nuclear power plant 60 miles north of the Swedish Capitol. One of Sweden’s biggest nuclear power stations was temporarily closed down because it measured an increase in radiation levels around the plant up to three times natural radiation levels. They assumed they had a leak. Later in the day, reports of increased radiation levels were reported at stations in Stockholm and 80 miles further south, and even a research establishment about 100 miles south of Stockholm. Reports came in from Finland of increased radiation levels. So now Swedish officials were not sure it was them who had a leaking power plant, but they knew for sure there was increased radiation, but they didn’t know from where.
In other news, Libya was accused of using their overseas embassies as outposts for terrorism. A Turkish prosecutor said two Libyans captured ten days earlier and formally arrested on April 26th, plotted to attack a U.S. officers club with hand grenades, smuggled into Turkey in Libyan Diplomatic baggage. The prosecutor went on reveal that the hand grenades were delivered to the terrorists by two Libyan Embassy employees.
All that, and a lot more for this busy and somewhat infamous April 27th in 1986 as reported by The CBS World News Roundup.