Construction of Toloko and Toloko Nuclear Power Station began in the year 2055. The purpose of the town was to house the workers at the plant and their families. The purpose of the plant was to provide electricity to the surrounding areas and as an emergency fissile material production facility, and a nuclear waste storage and processing facility. Construction of the plant was completed in three years - three months behind schedule for the massive plant. The town was finished slightly over two years later, just in time for the plant to receive its operating license and begin operation.
As the bombs and missiles came raining down, the Toloko area was an obvious target. By some miracle, the plant itself was never hit, and the attacks never came close enough to detonate its cores. However, the blast waves and ground tremors did inflict damage on the plant. These secondary effects caused the still-unsolved problem of the Reactor Six crack, fire and leak, as well as fragmenting the lid of one of the Radioactive Material Storage Tanks in the Reprocessing Facility. This event and the heat from the bombs caused the hazardous material to vaporize, expanding and completely lifting the lid from the tank. A fourteen tonne chunk of concrete from the steam blast landed in the center of Toloko, breaking a hole in the community fallout shelter (which was wholly inadequate as a bomb defense anyway). This left the townspeople hopelessly exposed to the massive cloud of radioactive steam that settled on the town. Those who weren't boiled alive died from the horrific burns and radiation poisoning within the hour.
In the plant, all was not well either. A skeleton crew remained behind, presuming they would be safe within the heavily-shielded complex. They stayed with the intention of shutting the plant down should the worst come to pass in the hopes that they could minimize the disaster should the plant suffer a hit. Tragically, while the plant did not suffer the catastrophe they had intended to prevent, Reactor Six was badly shaken by the events of the bombings. Her shell cracked, leaking molten metal into the plant and pumping fatal amounts of radiation into the building until the dying men managed to shut her down to reduce the effects. Only one of the fifty men survived, gradually getting sicker and watching the others die horrifically, one by one. Resigned to his fate, he finally let exhaustion take him, fully expecting not to wake up. However, fate had a different plan for him.
The man woke to his skin peeling, but feeling stronger than ever in the deadly cloud of radiation. He found he was giving off a faint glow as he rose and began the diagnostic process to find out just what the Hell had gone wrong and caused Reactor Six to flood the facility with toxic radiation. After discovering that there was a fire in the core and her shell was cracked, Rourke shut down the other two breeder cores, locking their control rods to prevent them fulling an even bigger blast if Reactor Six were to go critical. The Glowing One then descended into the town to search for survivors. He found none in the wreckage, just burned skeletons and pools of radioactive slime that had once been human beings.
Since that day many groups have come to settle in Toloko and the areas around it, attracted by the lure of working electricity and running water. However, the ground water is highly toxic due to the cracked waste storage tanks, the poisoned soil and the still-burning, still-leaking Reactor Core Six. The entire population of Toloko dies roughly once every year, poisoned either by the air, should they wander too close to the plant, or by the ground water. Those who saw the signs and fled often did so too late, having suffered too high a dose already. These people passed on the story that the land was cursed, and that a ghost sallied forth from the Power Plant on the hill to feed on their souls, ordering them to leave lest they die. The truth, while just as gruesome, is far less fanciful. The area is toxic and Liam occasionally wanders into the town to warn the residents of this, but he usually goes unheeded.
Toloko Nuclear Power Plant
The power plant itself is one of the largest plants constructed in the area that became known as the Four Seasons. It boasted six colossal reactors. Reactors One, Two and Three were large fusion cores, while Four, Five and Six were all Breeder Fission Reactors, producing fuel and fissile materials for the potential Nuclear Option in the Resource Wars. The plant also boasted waste storage and processing facilities.
No bombs or ICBMs detonated close enough to the plant to destroy it, but the ground tremors and blast waves of several bombs did enough damage to Reactor Six to crack its shell, causing a chain reaction that started a fire in the core that continues to burn as of 2281. Molten metal periodically bleeds from the core and the core's radiation permeates the grounds of the plant, contaminating the groundwater so severely that Toloko averages a complete change of population once every year. Taken over the 200+ years since the disaster that killed the town's original residents. The adjacent reactors - Cores Four and Five - were disabled after the leak was discovered by the plant's lone surviving the engineer, Liam Rourke.
Cores One, Two and Three still run at minimum capacity to supply power to the plant itself. However, there is more than enough power left over to supply the surrounding areas, leading to people coalescing in the region despite the "Curse of the Ghost". No matter how many people are killed by the toxic groundwater, or the dangerous radiation levels surrounding the plant, more will always be attracted to the area by the tales of working electrical equipment and of course, those curious about the Ghost of Toloko.
Quotes About Toloko
- "The land is cursed. It lures you with its treasures and then the Curse destroys you. The Ghost will tell you to leave or die. It is a haunted place. It belongs to the dead, and the living are not welcome there."
- ―A dying Wastelander warns other travelers of the toxic region
- "THE KEY TO THE G.E.C.K. STORAGE VAULT IS LOCATED IN TOLOKO. GOOD LUCK."
- ―Mr.DART encourages travelers to enter the toxic region
- "Why would I have the key to a G.E.C.K. Vault here? This is a power plant, not a fallout shelter! Get outta here, you delusional sonuvabitch!"
- ―If only Jackal knew the truth