Centralia: a fire that can last hundreds of years

Fire is one of nature’s most devastating elements and, when a fire occurs, it can wipe out what ever finds in its path; However, however strong it is usually controlled in days.


The incessant flame

But that’s not the case in Centralia, a small town in Pennsylvania’s Columbia County that’s been on fire for more than half a century.

Since 1841 it already existed under the name Centreville, but in 1865 it changed its name to Centralia and its main economic activity was, from then on, mining and coal mining until 1982.

However, what gave work and sustenance to hundreds of people for so many years, also ended up becoming a curse when in 1962 the presence of a fire was noticed in a dumpbed that had been opened right in one of the coal mines aband same that spread across the surrounding mines.

Several people tried to control the fire, but it was not possible and it continued during the 1970s and 1980s. Although by then the fire continued, approximately 1000 people were kept in the small municipality of Centralia, although much of it had conditions due to carbon monoxide.

From then on people began to evacuate the site massively and, according to the 2010 U.S. Census, only 10 people remained in Centralia.

Today the city, as it was known long ago, no longer exists and only the uninhabited ruins remain, but under its foundations continues the coal of the abandoned mines burning relentlessly as a silent witness of the vestiges that, as if they were it’s a real-life Silent Hill, they evoke the most pathetic scene, only in the case of Centralia, it’s estimated that there’s coal to keep burning for about 250 years.

Image source: pixabay.com

Centralia: a fire that can last hundreds of years
Source: curiosities  
August 14, 2019


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