The City of Hell, Jharia, is Built Over a Giant Burning Pit That Occasionally Collapses Swallowing Everything Above!

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This is hell city!

Jharia sits over a huge underground fire that has burned for 100 years. And sometimes, huge burning craters open up and swallow everything above them.

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In the city of Jharia and surroundings, an underground fire has been burning since 1916 – or even longer according to the locals. Picture by Johnny Haglund

Eternal fires are burning just below the earth’s surface in Jharia, India, slowly consuming a vast store of coal and occasionally opening immense chasms that swallow everything above them.

This terrible situation documented in amazing pictures by Johnny Haglund reminds me of the everlasting fires in the USA as well as the door to hell in the desert of Turkmenistan.

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Actually, the situation has never been worse than now. The earth is literary on fire. Whole mountains are burning, houses disappear and people are dying. Picture by Johnny Haglund

The fires started in 1916 and are the result of coal mines that were improperly shut down.

Today, some 70 fires are currently burning.

Twenty years ago, the earth opened and destroyed 250 houses in just two hours. Over time the flames have chewed through 41 million tons of the coal.

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The fire evolved in to more than 70 underground fires. Picture by Johnny Haglund

People live amongst smoke and toxic fumes that constantly seep out of the earth, causing respiratory and skin problems.

Residents’ faces are burning and covered by a layer of coal. The soles of boots are meting off.

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The fire probably started when abandon coalmines was not properly closed. Picture by Johnny Haglund

Some people steal coal from the mines, selling it in local markets or using it for cooking and heating.

Though they might go unnoticed by authorities, these individuals often are injured or killed falling into fissures.

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The inhabitants use the fire to warm themselves on cold winter nights, to dry clothes and sometimes even cook food. Picture by Johnny Haglund

Many of them are children, struggling up the mine’s embankments with heavy loads.

Efforts to relocate residents have been hampered by bureaucratic holdups and local resistance.

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Jharia is known as the Hell city in India. Picture by Johnny Haglund

Underground fires are notoriously difficult to put out. Some experts say Jharia has enough coal to burn for another 3,800 years. Fires can be extinguished by sand, water, or cutting off the oxygen supply.

This next video is in Hindi, but has a few terrifying pictures of pits and coal mountains of fire:

Now I think why people in India called Jharia the City of Hell. It must be just terrifying to live in such an underground inferno. Get similar stories on Strange Sounds and Steve Quayle. [Wired]

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