In an interview with the Daily Record, Ferns claimed his uncle, Robert Stephenson, was working for the Scottish Water Board in the rain in the Killearn area of Scotland shortly after the disaster. His uncle “asked to come in but were told by their gaffer to stay outside and to carry on working. They carried on.”
Scotland had advised residents to avoid drinking rainwater after radiation levels soared in 1986.
All of the men working with his uncle subsequently died from cancer before age 50. Ferns said his uncle told family and friends to blame Chernobyl for his demise.
The Chernobyl disaster happened on April 26, 1986, in the Ukranian town of Pripyat. A reactor core exploded during a safety test. Some experts believe as many as 100,000 people may have died as a result of radiation from the accident, although the official Soviet Union toll remains at 31.
“There’s a lot of politics around it,” Ferns said. “But what we do show is that, at the end of the day, it is the workers who get f—ked over.”