Visiting abandoned towns can be hazardous for a number of reasons, including crumbling structures and guards who will shoot trespassers on sight. But some ghost towns have toxic legacies due to chemicals, radiation, or even biological weapons.
Fifty years ago today, a coal seam caught fire in Centralia, Pennsylvania, causing the mines beneath the town to catch fire. While the decades-old fire has caused most residents to abandon the town, a few holdouts remain.
Photographer Jim Lo Scalzo has captured the scorched earth beauty of America's coal country. In the photo montage "Ghosts in the Hollow," Scalzo navigates through fog, Centralia fumes, and old coal sluices. No wonder The Road was filmed out there.
Sometimes a fire just won't go out. Uzbekistan is home to a place called Darvaz, nicknamed by locals "the door to hell." It's a semi-underground gas fire that's been burning nonstop for 35 years. Find out why, and see some close-up pictures of this hellmouth after the jump, plus another fire in Pennsylvania that has…