In the early 1900s, a town in Pennsylvania known as Centralia was once renowned for possessing fourteen active coal mines and a population of two thousand and five hundred residents.
Then, in the 1960s, Centralia kissed its fame goodbye after an eery coal mine fire broke out that could never be extinguished.
Nonetheless, even though all of the mines became abandoned and many residents fled the town, one thousand people still regarded Centralia as their home.
It all began in May 1962, when Centralia’s town council congregated to discuss their new landfill. It was fifty feet deep and had only been dug earlier that year to combat the town’s illegal dumping issue.
But, it had become full– and a strategy to clear the landfill was desperately needed before Centralia’s yearly Memorial Day celebration.
So, the council members came up with what was considered a genius idea at the time. They proposed simply burning up the items in the landfill to create more space. And after following through with the plan on May 27, 1962– it worked for a short time.
The town’s fire department even lined the landfill to ensure they contained the large blaze and that it did not travel to neighboring homes.
But, just two days after the flames were thought to be extinguished, the unthinkable happened. Random fires began popping up throughout the community, and officials were utterly baffled.
Then, after employing rakes and bulldozers to investigate the landfill, they realized the problem– the bottom of the town’s trash pit was directly connected with the maze of coal tunnels thousands of feet below ground.
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