North Carolina Newspapers

    Volume 85, Issue 28 Web Edition SERVING BREVARD COLLEGE SINCE 1935
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April 15, 2020
Chernobyl fires causing
spike in radiation levels
By Zach Dickerson
Editor in Chief
A forest fire covering 50 acres erupted on the
afternoon of Saturday, April 4, near the village
of Vladimiovka, located in the exclusion zone,
with another smaller fire around 12 acres also
burning. Because of these fires, radiation levels
near the Chernobyl nuclear reactor disaster site
have spiked.
Since the start of the fire, the area of the blaze
has increased to nearly 250 acres. According
to the Associated Press, the fire is believed to
have started near the village of Volodymyrivka.
Egor Firsov, head of Ukraine’s ecological
inspection service, made a Facebook post of
a picture of a Geiger counter and a statement
saying, “There is bad news — in the center of the
fire, radiation is above normal. As you can see
in the video, the readings of the device are 2.3,
when the norm is 0.14. But this is only within
the area of the fire outbreak.”
These measurements are referring to the
microsievert per hour (|xSv/h) reading. The
maximum allowable amount of natural
background radiation is 0.5 pSv/h, but Frisov’s
reported amount was nearly five times that.
Some reports have shown that radiation has
now spiked up to 16 times higher than the
typical levels of the area. Local media also
reported on Thursday, April 9, that authorities
were evacuating a small community within the
exclusion zone.
The spiked radiation levels don’t appear to
extend to Kiev, the capital of Ukraine, or to the
city of Chernobyl itself. Authorities state those
radiation levels remain normal.
Another image, on Sunday, April 5, showed a
Geiger counter near the fire with readings just
below the maximum natural amount, 3.4 pSv/h.
Other reported footage, also taken near the fire,
show higher readings.
Hundreds of firefighters, two An-32P planes
and an Mi-8 helicopter are working to battle
the larger fire. About 42 water drops have been
carried out on the area. A smaller number of
firefighters were sent to work on the smaller fire.
See 'Chernobyl fire' on page 3
A view of a forest fire burning near the viilage of Volodymyrivka in the exciusion zone around the
Chernobyi nuciear power piant, Ukraine, Sunday, April 5, 2020.
BC to reimburse
room and board
for students who
moved home
By Aia Andonovska
Arts & Life Editor
By now, most students will have checked
their email and seen that Brevard College has
come up with a reimbursement plan for stu
dents who are completing their spring 2020
semester online in the comfort and safety
of their own homes. Due to the COVlD-19
pandemic and colleges shutting their doors all
over the world, most have enacted reimburse
ment policies in order to aid their students
during this dire time of need.
On the BC website, a breakdown of num
bers is posted. Total room and board fees for
one semester equals $5,200. The total number
of days students attended school this semester
was 109. The daily rate of room and board
equates to $47.71.
First, Brevard College calculated each
student’s refund by gathering data through
the use of a Google form, communication
with students, walk-throughs of residence
halls and reviews of meal swipe activity.
This reimbursement period began on March
22 at the very earliest. For students who did
not inform the college of their departure,
the college used March 29 as their reference
move out date.
Students who continue to live on campus
do not qualify for reimbursement of any kind.
Students who moved out but are still storing
belongings on campus are eligible for 75
percent of a refund. Some students initally
expressed mixed feelings about this, because
of various circumstances surrounding travel
such as flights being cancelled.
However, there is a very simple appeal pro
cess that the college has created, according to
Mitch Radford, Associate Vice President for
Finance/Controller. “We realized that some
would have had to travel very far to get their
belongings, which is why we implemented
See 'Reimbursement' on page 3

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