“At 1830 (1530 GMT) the situation with the forest fire around the Chernobyl plant escalated”. The National Guard and the Interior Ministry’s troops were also put on alert in case the fire worsened.

Interior Minister Arsen Avakov said the fire involved about 400 hectares.

Over 300 fire fighters had been battling the blaze, which was called the worst in the area since 1992.

An elderly woman pays her respects to victims of the Chernobyl nuclear disaster at a memorial in Kie …

While the fire itself is not threatening the Chernobyl site, the fact that it’s in the exclusion zone is raising questions about how to fight it, should it become out of control.

A handout picture taken and released by the Ukrainian prime minister’s press service on April 28, 2015 shows an airplane dropping water onto a forest fire burning near the Chernobyl plant in Ukraine.

“Our emergency services are actively working there to prevent the fire spreading further”. “The EU is helping to make Chernobyl safe again”.

It’s only about 12 miles from the Chernobyl nuclear power plant, the site of the world’s worst nuclear disaster back in 1986.

The human toll of the disaster is still disputed.

Authorities are investigating the possibility the fire may have been intentionally set.

They hastily laid over the reactor site a concrete cover dubbed “the sarcophagus”, which is now cracking and must be replaced.

The fire is described as the largest of its kind to hit Ukraine in more than two decades.

It is financed by international donations managed by the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD). The steel framework will contain a technological section and auxiliary structures.

With a lifespan of a minimum of 100 years it creates the timeframe to develop and implement mitigating strategies for the future treatment of the damaged reactor.

The Shelter Object sarcophagus was built right after the accident.In the late 2007, the NOVARKA Consortium headed by French companies started developing an arc.

Interfax Police evacuating people over fire not far from Chernobyl NPP

Forest fire rages near Chernobyl nuclear site

Police evacuating people over fire not far from Chernobyl NPP — Interfax