Cover image of Great Disasters
(55)

Rank #57 in Documentary category

Society & Culture
Documentary

Great Disasters

Updated about 22 hours ago

Rank #57 in Documentary category

Society & Culture
Documentary
Read more

Whether natural or man-made, disasters attract a strange mixture of horror and fascination. However, the spectacle of devastation is only ever one part of the story. Take a closer look, and you will find tales of extraordinary human endurance and heroism, stories that veer from the horrific to the oddly humorous, and lessons that can be learned to make our world safer. From the Titanic to the Costa Concordia, the Station nightclub fire to the Pulse nightclub shooting, these extraordinary events – and the people involved – are examined on the Great Disasters podcast, written, researched, recorded and produced by me, Kari Fay. From official reports, first-person accounts, and contemporary media, I delve into the often-appalling details of these events to bring you the full story.

Read more

Whether natural or man-made, disasters attract a strange mixture of horror and fascination. However, the spectacle of devastation is only ever one part of the story. Take a closer look, and you will find tales of extraordinary human endurance and heroism, stories that veer from the horrific to the oddly humorous, and lessons that can be learned to make our world safer. From the Titanic to the Costa Concordia, the Station nightclub fire to the Pulse nightclub shooting, these extraordinary events – and the people involved – are examined on the Great Disasters podcast, written, researched, recorded and produced by me, Kari Fay. From official reports, first-person accounts, and contemporary media, I delve into the often-appalling details of these events to bring you the full story.

iTunes Ratings

55 Ratings
Average Ratings
47
4
2
1
1

Format A+

By matt kirschner - Jun 11 2018
Read more
The show was really informative and I enjoy how the show was structured!

Big Fan, Well Delivered History

By PhilBana - Feb 12 2018
Read more
Engaging episodes, interesting history. Worth a listen.

iTunes Ratings

55 Ratings
Average Ratings
47
4
2
1
1

Format A+

By matt kirschner - Jun 11 2018
Read more
The show was really informative and I enjoy how the show was structured!

Big Fan, Well Delivered History

By PhilBana - Feb 12 2018
Read more
Engaging episodes, interesting history. Worth a listen.
Cover image of Great Disasters

Great Disasters

Latest release on Jan 24, 2020

Read more

Whether natural or man-made, disasters attract a strange mixture of horror and fascination. However, the spectacle of devastation is only ever one part of the story. Take a closer look, and you will find tales of extraordinary human endurance and heroism, stories that veer from the horrific to the oddly humorous, and lessons that can be learned to make our world safer. From the Titanic to the Costa Concordia, the Station nightclub fire to the Pulse nightclub shooting, these extraordinary events – and the people involved – are examined on the Great Disasters podcast, written, researched, recorded and produced by me, Kari Fay. From official reports, first-person accounts, and contemporary media, I delve into the often-appalling details of these events to bring you the full story.

Rank #1: Chernobyl Part One

Podcast cover
Read more

In April 1986, power plant operators prepared to carry out a planned test which would take less than a minute. Instead, they triggered a disaster with consequences that would last for thousands of years.

Drawing on accounts from eyewitnesses and survivors, as well as contemporary news reports and expert assessments, I'll tell the full story of the horrifying Chernobyl disaster.


Visit www.greatdisasters.co.uk for the full transcript and more.

Check out the Great Disasters Podcast on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram - let me know what you think of the show.


Support the show (https://www.patreon.com/greatdisasters)

Apr 26 2019

39mins

Play

Rank #2: Seveso Chemical Disaster

Podcast cover
Read more

An ordinary summer's day in Italy was disturbed by the sudden appearance of a white cloud. The cloud was vapour that had been released by a local chemical plant, and Seveso would forever be known for its impact.

Support the show (https://www.patreon.com/greatdisasters)

Jun 15 2018

33mins

Play

Rank #3: The Station Nightclub Fire

Podcast cover
Read more

On a cold night in February, hundreds of people packed into The Station nightclub to see the band Great White playing. It would be a night none of them would forget - but the band didn't even finish their first song.

Support the show (https://www.patreon.com/greatdisasters)

May 04 2018

33mins

Play

Rank #4: Everest Avalanche and Nepal Earthquake

Podcast cover
Read more

The allure of the tallest mountain in the world drew hundreds of people to the slopes of Mount Everest. Even though they were prepared for a risky journey, they did not expect the disaster which befell them - and the country who welcomed them.

Support the show (https://www.patreon.com/greatdisasters)

Mar 09 2018

29mins

Play

Rank #5: The Great Hunger, Ireland 1845-50

Podcast cover
Read more

Also known as "an Gorta Mór" in Irish, or the Irish Potato Famine to those outside the Emerald Isle, the Great Hunger created a dividing line in Irish history. It was triggered by the potato blight, but the true depth of misery that it brought was largely created by the politics of the British government.

Drawing on contemporary news reports and historical research, I'll tell the full story of the Irish Famine.


Visit www.greatdisasters.co.uk for the full transcript and more.

Check out the Great Disasters Podcast on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram - let me know what you think of the show.

Support the show (https://www.patreon.com/greatdisasters)

Jun 07 2019

43mins

Play

Rank #6: Galveston Hurricane 1900

Podcast cover
Read more

People gathered on the beaches to watch the awesome waves, but this was no mere squall coming in from the Gulf. It was a hurricane, and by the following day there would not be a single building in Galveston standing undamaged.

Drawing on eyewitness accounts, official reports and contemporary news reports, I'll tell the full story of the devastating Galveston Hurricane


Visit www.greatdisasters.co.uk for the full transcript and more.

Check out the Great Disasters Podcast on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram - let me know what you think of the show.

Support the show (https://www.patreon.com/greatdisasters)

Apr 12 2019

36mins

Play

Rank #7: The Spanish Flu

Podcast cover
Read more

The flu pandemic of 1918 was not like other outbreaks of influenza. It attacked the young and healthy, not just the infirm, and swept the globe to create a deadly outbreak of unprecedented proportions. It was called the Spanish Flu, and even in the wake of the Great War which preceded it, it was terrifying.

Support the show (https://www.patreon.com/greatdisasters)

Jan 12 2018

22mins

Play

Rank #8: Air France 358

Podcast cover
Read more

Air France Flight 358 was a transatlantic journey from France to Canada with over three hundred people on board. When it careened off the end of the runway on landing and caught fire, creating a huge blaze that burned for two hours, everyone feared the worst. But the worst didn't come; everyone on board got out alive.

Support the show (https://www.patreon.com/greatdisasters)

Dec 29 2017

31mins

Play

Rank #9: San Francisco Earthquake 1906

Podcast cover
Read more

Shortly after five am on the 18th April 1906, San Francisco was rudely awoken by a major earthquake. It was only the first part of a double tragedy; fire then swept through the city leaving only destruction in its wake.

Support the show (https://www.patreon.com/greatdisasters)

Feb 09 2018

27mins

Play

Rank #10: 1955 Le Mans Crash

Podcast cover
Read more

The 24 Hours of Le Mans is one of the world's most prestigious motor races. Established in 1923, it challenges both man and machine to compete at the very edge of their ability. In 1955, that challenge led to catastrophe.

Support the show (https://www.patreon.com/greatdisasters)

Jul 13 2018

31mins

Play

Rank #11: Chernobyl Part Two

Podcast cover
Read more

The people of Pripyat knew something had happened at the nearby power plant - but they only realised how serious it was two days later, when they were ordered to evacuate the city.

Drawing on accounts from eyewitnesses and survivors, as well as contemporary news reports and expert assessments, I'll tell the full story of the horrifying Chernobyl disaster.

This is the second of two episodes on this topic.

Visit www.greatdisasters.co.uk for the full transcript and more.

Check out the Great Disasters Podcast on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram - let me know what you think of the show.


Support the show (https://www.patreon.com/greatdisasters)

May 10 2019

46mins

Play

Rank #12: The Sampoong Department Store Collapse

Podcast cover
Read more

In the glamorous Gangnam area of Seoul, South Korea, hundreds of shoppers browsed through luxury goods or stopped to grab a couple of things on their way home from work. Then, with a loud bang, the store literally collapsed around them.

Drawing on contemporary news reports and accounts from survivors, witnesses and investigators, I'll tell the full story of the Sampoong Department Store collapse.


Visit www.greatdisasters.co.uk for the full transcript and more.

Check out the Great Disasters Podcast on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram - let me know what you think of the show.

Support the show (https://www.patreon.com/greatdisasters)

Jun 21 2019

31mins

Play

Rank #13: The Princess Alice Disaster

Podcast cover
Read more

The Princess Alice was a popular pleasure steamer plying the waters of the River Thames. The Bywell Castle was a collier ship from Newcastle, making its way out to sea after repainting. When the two met on the river, hundreds died.

Drawing on accounts from eyewitnesses and survivors, as well as contemporary news reports, I'll tell the full story of the sinking of the Princess Alice.


Visit www.greatdisasters.co.uk for the full transcript and more.

Check out the Great Disasters Podcast on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram - let me know what you think of the show.

Support the show (https://www.patreon.com/greatdisasters)

May 24 2019

39mins

Play

Rank #14: Space Shuttle Columbia

Podcast cover
Read more

On January 16th, 2003, the Space Shuttle Columbia launched on its 28th mission, a scientific expedition that would see the crew spend sixteen days in orbit carrying out research. All went well - until it was time to come home.

Drawing on contemporary news items, witness accounts, and official reports, I'll tell the full story of the tragic loss of Columbia.


Visit www.greatdisasters.co.uk for the full transcript and more.

Check out the Great Disasters Podcast on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram - let me know what you think of the show.



Support the show (https://www.patreon.com/greatdisasters)

Sep 20 2019

45mins

Play

Rank #15: Apollo 1

Podcast cover
Read more

With America lagging behind the Soviet Union in the space race, JFK made a promise to reach the moon. Three men paid the price on a launch pad at Cape Canaveral. 

Support the show (https://www.patreon.com/greatdisasters)

Jul 01 2018

31mins

Play

The General Slocum

Podcast cover
Read more

A bright, sunny New York morning turned to disaster in a matter of moments - and it would be the city's most deadly disaster for almost a hundred years. This heartbreaking disaster literally decimated a community, with a death toll of over a thousand, mostly women and children.

Drawing from contemporary reports and eyewitness accounts, I'll tell the story of the General Slocum disaster.

Visit www.greatdisasters.co.uk for the full transcript and more.

Check out the Great Disasters Podcast on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram - let me know what you think of the show.

Support the show (https://www.patreon.com/greatdisasters)

Jan 24 2020

42mins

Play

The Victoria Hall Disaster

Podcast cover
Read more

It was supposed to be a fun afternoon; hundreds of children packed into Sunderland's Victoria Hall for a magic show. Their tickets promised the greatest treat ever given, and the chance of presents, too. However, for many it would end in the most heartbreaking tragedy possible.

Drawing from contemporary and modern accounts, I'll tell the story of the Victoria Hall disaster.

Visit www.greatdisasters.co.uk for the full transcript and more.

Check out the Great Disasters Podcast on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram - let me know what you think of the show.

Support the show (https://www.patreon.com/greatdisasters)

Jan 10 2020

34mins

Play

Fukushima Daiichi

Podcast cover
Read more

The Tohoku earthquake and tsunami brought unspeakable devastation to Japan, but they were only part of the story. A third disaster followed when the first two cut off power to one of the world's largest nuclear power plants. Now a race was on to contain the meltdown and save the country.

Drawing heavily from eyewitness accounts, I'll tell the story of the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear accident.

Visit www.greatdisasters.co.uk for the full transcript and more.

Check out the Great Disasters Podcast on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram - let me know what you think of the show.

Support the show (https://www.patreon.com/greatdisasters)

Dec 20 2019

39mins

Play

2011 Tohoku Earthquake and Tsunami

Podcast cover
Read more

Japan is a country that's accustomed to earthquakes, and one you might have thought would be prepared for anything. However, they were not prepared for the scale of the megathrust earthquake that happened one Friday afternoon in March.

Drawing heavily from eyewitness accounts, I'll tell the story of the 2011 earthquake and tsunami in Japan.

Visit www.greatdisasters.co.uk for the full transcript and more.

Check out the Great Disasters Podcast on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram - let me know what you think of the show.

Support the show (https://www.patreon.com/greatdisasters)

Nov 29 2019

36mins

Play

Air New Zealand Flight 901

Podcast cover
Read more
More than 250 people boarded a DC-10 airliner for a luxurious sightseeing trip in one of the most remote parts of the world. Their trip came to an unexpected and tragic end on the side of a mountain.

Using contemporary news reports, the accounts of those involved in the investigation, and the two official reports produced, I'll tell the story of the Erebus Disaster.

Visit www.greatdisasters.co.uk for the full transcript and more.

Check out the Great Disasters Podcast on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram - let me know what you think of the show.

Support the show (https://www.patreon.com/greatdisasters)

Nov 15 2019

43mins

Play

1931 China Floods

Podcast cover
Read more

The Yangtze River is the third longest in the world - and when it breaks its banks, its power should not be underestimated.

Using contemporary accounts and modern analysis, I'll tell the story of the 1931 China Floods.

Visit www.greatdisasters.co.uk for the full transcript and more.

Check out the Great Disasters Podcast on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram - let me know what you think of the show.

Support the show (https://www.patreon.com/greatdisasters)

Nov 01 2019

31mins

Play

Vesuvius

Podcast cover
Read more

It is perhaps the most famous volcano in the world - but the event it’s best known for happened almost two thousand years ago. So what is it about Mount Vesuvius that allows its story to endure?

Using the eyewitness account of Pliny the Younger and other historic and modern material, I'll tell the story of Vesuvius and Pompeii.

Visit www.greatdisasters.co.uk for the full transcript and more.

Check out the Great Disasters Podcast on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram - let me know what you think of the show.

Support the show (https://www.patreon.com/greatdisasters)

Oct 18 2019

32mins

Play

Pearl Harbor

Podcast cover
Read more

In December, 1941, thousands of American servicemen were enjoying themselves on the idyllic Hawaiian island of Oahu, where the Pacific Fleet was in port. Then, on a date that would "live in infamy", they were abruptly and dramatically pulled into the Second World War.

Using eyewitness accounts and contemporary material, I'll tell the story of Pearl Harbor.

Visit www.greatdisasters.co.uk for the full transcript and more.

Check out the Great Disasters Podcast on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram - let me know what you think of the show.



Support the show (https://www.patreon.com/greatdisasters)

Oct 04 2019

43mins

Play

Space Shuttle Columbia

Podcast cover
Read more

On January 16th, 2003, the Space Shuttle Columbia launched on its 28th mission, a scientific expedition that would see the crew spend sixteen days in orbit carrying out research. All went well - until it was time to come home.

Drawing on contemporary news items, witness accounts, and official reports, I'll tell the full story of the tragic loss of Columbia.


Visit www.greatdisasters.co.uk for the full transcript and more.

Check out the Great Disasters Podcast on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram - let me know what you think of the show.



Support the show (https://www.patreon.com/greatdisasters)

Sep 20 2019

45mins

Play

The Carrington Event

Podcast cover
Read more

In 1859, a spectacular auroral display astonished people all around the world - it was visible far beyond the usual latitudes for such a sight. At the same time, the nascent telegraph system went haywire, and an English astronomer gazing at the sun spotted the connection. 

Drawing on contemporary news reports and modern research, I'll tell the story of the Carrington Event - and how it could be a warning of future disaster.


Visit www.greatdisasters.co.uk for the full transcript and more.

Check out the Great Disasters Podcast on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram - let me know what you think of the show.

Support the show (https://www.patreon.com/greatdisasters)

Sep 06 2019

30mins

Play

The Sampoong Department Store Collapse

Podcast cover
Read more

In the glamorous Gangnam area of Seoul, South Korea, hundreds of shoppers browsed through luxury goods or stopped to grab a couple of things on their way home from work. Then, with a loud bang, the store literally collapsed around them.

Drawing on contemporary news reports and accounts from survivors, witnesses and investigators, I'll tell the full story of the Sampoong Department Store collapse.


Visit www.greatdisasters.co.uk for the full transcript and more.

Check out the Great Disasters Podcast on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram - let me know what you think of the show.

Support the show (https://www.patreon.com/greatdisasters)

Jun 21 2019

31mins

Play

The Great Hunger, Ireland 1845-50

Podcast cover
Read more

Also known as "an Gorta Mór" in Irish, or the Irish Potato Famine to those outside the Emerald Isle, the Great Hunger created a dividing line in Irish history. It was triggered by the potato blight, but the true depth of misery that it brought was largely created by the politics of the British government.

Drawing on contemporary news reports and historical research, I'll tell the full story of the Irish Famine.


Visit www.greatdisasters.co.uk for the full transcript and more.

Check out the Great Disasters Podcast on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram - let me know what you think of the show.

Support the show (https://www.patreon.com/greatdisasters)

Jun 07 2019

43mins

Play

The Princess Alice Disaster

Podcast cover
Read more

The Princess Alice was a popular pleasure steamer plying the waters of the River Thames. The Bywell Castle was a collier ship from Newcastle, making its way out to sea after repainting. When the two met on the river, hundreds died.

Drawing on accounts from eyewitnesses and survivors, as well as contemporary news reports, I'll tell the full story of the sinking of the Princess Alice.


Visit www.greatdisasters.co.uk for the full transcript and more.

Check out the Great Disasters Podcast on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram - let me know what you think of the show.

Support the show (https://www.patreon.com/greatdisasters)

May 24 2019

39mins

Play

Chernobyl Part Two

Podcast cover
Read more

The people of Pripyat knew something had happened at the nearby power plant - but they only realised how serious it was two days later, when they were ordered to evacuate the city.

Drawing on accounts from eyewitnesses and survivors, as well as contemporary news reports and expert assessments, I'll tell the full story of the horrifying Chernobyl disaster.

This is the second of two episodes on this topic.

Visit www.greatdisasters.co.uk for the full transcript and more.

Check out the Great Disasters Podcast on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram - let me know what you think of the show.


Support the show (https://www.patreon.com/greatdisasters)

May 10 2019

46mins

Play

Chernobyl Part One

Podcast cover
Read more

In April 1986, power plant operators prepared to carry out a planned test which would take less than a minute. Instead, they triggered a disaster with consequences that would last for thousands of years.

Drawing on accounts from eyewitnesses and survivors, as well as contemporary news reports and expert assessments, I'll tell the full story of the horrifying Chernobyl disaster.


Visit www.greatdisasters.co.uk for the full transcript and more.

Check out the Great Disasters Podcast on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram - let me know what you think of the show.


Support the show (https://www.patreon.com/greatdisasters)

Apr 26 2019

39mins

Play

Galveston Hurricane 1900

Podcast cover
Read more

People gathered on the beaches to watch the awesome waves, but this was no mere squall coming in from the Gulf. It was a hurricane, and by the following day there would not be a single building in Galveston standing undamaged.

Drawing on eyewitness accounts, official reports and contemporary news reports, I'll tell the full story of the devastating Galveston Hurricane


Visit www.greatdisasters.co.uk for the full transcript and more.

Check out the Great Disasters Podcast on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram - let me know what you think of the show.

Support the show (https://www.patreon.com/greatdisasters)

Apr 12 2019

36mins

Play

The Bradford City Stadium Fire

Podcast cover
Read more

It started as a wisp of smoke, but within a few short minutes it turned into a deadly inferno from which fifty six football fans were unable to escape.

Drawing on eyewitness accounts, official reports and contemporary news reports, I'll tell the full story of the Bradford City stadium fire.

Visit www.greatdisasters.co.uk for the full transcript and more.

Check out the Great Disasters Podcast on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram - let me know what you think of the show.

Support the show (https://www.patreon.com/greatdisasters)

Mar 29 2019

37mins

Play

Haiti Earthquake 2010

Podcast cover
Read more

Social, political and geological factors combined to create disaster on an almost unbelievable scale. The 2010 Haiti earthquake killed at least 100,000, and displaced millions.

Drawing on eyewitness accounts, official reports and contemporary news reports, I'll tell the full story of the worst disaster the 21st century has so far seen.

Visit www.greatdisasters.co.uk for the full transcript and more.

Check out the Great Disasters Podcast on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram - let me know what you think of the show.

Support the show (https://www.patreon.com/greatdisasters)

Mar 15 2019

30mins

Play

The Flying Scotsman, 1947

Podcast cover
Read more

With an experienced driver in the engine, the Flying Scotsman service was steaming along at full speed on its way to London when suddenly, it left the rails. 28 people were killed in the mangled wreckage. The question was, why?

Drawing on official reports and contemporary accounts, I'll tell the full story of what went wrong.

Visit www.greatdisasters.co.uk for the full transcript and more.

Check out the Great Disasters Podcast on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram - let me know what you think of the show.



Support the show (https://www.patreon.com/greatdisasters)

Mar 01 2019

34mins

Play

Morecambe Bay Cocklepicking Disaster

Podcast cover
Read more

This episode looks at a disaster which struck close to my home - the Morecambe Bay cocklepicking disaster. A large group of Chinese immigrant labourers were sent out onto the sands to collect cockles, but they didn't know just how dangerous the tide can be.

Drawing on official reports and witness accounts, I'll tell the full story of what went wrong.

Visit www.greatdisasters.co.uk for the full transcript and more. Thanks to Tim Liardet for permission to include part of his poem, Priest Skear.

Check out the Great Disasters Podcast on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram - let me know what you think of the show.

Support the show (https://www.patreon.com/greatdisasters)

Feb 15 2019

33mins

Play

iTunes Ratings

55 Ratings
Average Ratings
47
4
2
1
1

Format A+

By matt kirschner - Jun 11 2018
Read more
The show was really informative and I enjoy how the show was structured!

Big Fan, Well Delivered History

By PhilBana - Feb 12 2018
Read more
Engaging episodes, interesting history. Worth a listen.