1984 Gas leak in Bhopal, India

1984 Gas leak in Bhopal, India

On this day 03 Dec 1984, a gas leak from a Union Carbide plant in Bhopal, India, spread over a populated area, resulting ultimately in 15,000 to 20,000 deaths and leaving some half million survivors with chronic medical ailments.

On Dec. 3, 1984, Union Carbide’s pesticide plant in Bhopal, India, was the scene of one of the worst industrial accidents in history when methyl isocyanate gas leaked from the plant and spread over a populated area, killing at least 2,000 people at the time of the accident and causing an estimated 15,000 to 20,000 subsequent deaths. Many thousands more sustained lifelong injuries.

Suits for damages were brought against the company, and in 1989 India’s Supreme Court ordered Union Carbide to pay $470 million in compensation to the victims of the accident. After its merger with Dow, Union Carbide remained a leading producer of chemicals and polymers for use in a variety of industrial and consumer products, including paints, solvents, antifreeze, and coatings.

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