Reuters: 7-hour emergency declared after reactor leak at Pakistani nuclear plant, no radiation damage reported ‘yet’ — Men in protective gear isolated part of plant

Published: October 20th, 2011 at 8:37 pm ET


Headline: “Leak at Pakistani nuclear plant, no radiation damage reported yet” (Reuters, Oct. 20)

“An official at a nuclear power plant in Pakistan said it declared a seven-hour emergency after heavy water leaked out of a reactor” (Wall Street Journal, Oct. 20)

Though officials claim no radiation has leaked, “Deputy Plant Manager Azhar Zia said such minor leakages occurred in many plants around the world. However he said that the spokesman would give the viewpoint of the organisation.” (The News, Oct. 20)

“Staff in protective gear isolated the damaged portion of the plant” (The News, Oct. 20)

“Director General KANUPP (Karachi Nuclear Power Plant) Javed Iqbal declined to give any details when contacted.” (The News, Oct. 20)

Published: October 20th, 2011 at 8:37 pm ET


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58 comments to Reuters: 7-hour emergency declared after reactor leak at Pakistani nuclear plant, no radiation damage reported ‘yet’ — Men in protective gear isolated part of plant

  • Anthony Anthony

    Oh my god…. how many MORE *problem* reactors are needed to understand the obvious?

  • bmurr bmurr

    Check out this story. It’s nothing new, but it illustrates how we all have Nuclear Reactors hanging by a sting over our heads every day of our lives.

    Millstone Unit 2 Power Spike: Did We Almost Lose Connecticut?
    Dominion Demonstrates It Is Unqualified to Operate a Nuclear Power Plant

  • arclight arclight

    Interesting… all I could find on the site was this!

    AEMC at Karachi is one of 14 working Nuclear Medicine centres of Pakistan Atomic Energy Commission..

    seems harmless enough… just a medical centre!! Phew!! Oh wait a minute
    THAT LINK DOESN’T WORK… so here’s the cached version
    “KANUPP, Karachi is a single unit CANDU PHWR with a total gross capacity of 137 Mega Watts. It is located at Paradise Point on the arid Arabian Sea Coast, about 15 miles to the west of Karachi. It has been in commercial operation since 1972. KANUPP is part of Karachi Nuclear Power Complex (KNPC) and is owned and operated by Pakistan Atomic Energy Commission (PAEC). “

    Amd from that link on the right you can still access stuff like this
    “Major areas of improvement being undertaken to ensure continued safe operation are:
    Replacement of Computer, Control and Instrumentation System.
    Replacement of Fire Alarm System.
    Replacement of Nuclear Power Instrumentation System.
    Replacement of Fuel Handling Control Computers.” ETC…
    “Technological Upgrades

    In our endeavors to improve the plant performance, about 600 modifications have been incorporated. Some of the important changes and improvements are:
    Plant Control Computer Memory Expansion

    • arclight arclight

      Re-tubing of Salt Water Heat Exchangers with Titanium Tubes.
      Plant Regulating Computer System Software Modifications.
      Fabrication and Replacement of Fuelling Machine Snout Jaws.
      Development of Computer Codes for Fuel Management.
      Fire Water Ring Replacement.
      Replacement of Diesel Engine Sea Water Cooling System with Radiator Cooling.
      Turbine Lubricating Oil Separator Replacement.
      Improvement in Heavy Water Leak Detection System.
      Indigenous Fabrication and Installation of second Heavy Water Upgrading Unit.
      Fabrication and Replacement of Sea Water Pump Casings and Salt Water Piping.
      Replacement of old Chlorination plant with New “SANILEC” System.
      Designing and Implementation of “Empty Channel Heavy Water Cooling System” for two Retracted Reactor Fuel Channels.
      Replacement of Obsolete Turbine Machine Monitoring System (MMS).
      Installation of Close Circuit Television Monitoring System for Reactor Building Interior Monitoring.
      Switchyard Extension.
      Improvement in Control Room Operator Information System.
      Upgradation of Plant External Communication Facilities.
      Computerization of Plant Documentation for Data Acquisition and Retrieval.
      And everything you wanted to know about the plant with some nice colour diagrams!!

      if the links are dead use the title of the page ie plant description and kanupp in google search and it should take you to the page….hit cached if theve shut the link down…which they seem to be doing now?????

    • kintaman kintaman

      But I thought CANDU reactors were supposed to totally safe? Or said the Canadians! Enough with this nightmare. People can only handle so much of this.

  • arclight arclight

    lol just connecting dots here 🙂

    International Cooperation
    “International cooperation and feedback forms an important and integral part in the safe and continued operation of a nuclear power plant. It helps in promoting closer cooperation among utilities owning and operating a nuclear station in matters relating to plant operation and maintenance and to foster cooperative development programme to improve plant performance

    KANUPP maintains close collaboration with IAEA. The plant is under full IAEA Safeguards.

    KANUPP became a member of Candu Owners Group (COG) in 1989.

    KANUPP also became a member of WANO in 1989. It is a member of both WANO-Tokyo Center and WANO-Atlanta Center.

    dont let them tell you this could only happen in pakistan as the iaea and others?? are FULLY involved!! lol 🙂

    • Hemisfear311 Hemisfear311

      @ arclight

      In reply to “dont let them tell you this could only happen in pakistan…”

      Quoting the aticle:
      “Deputy Plant Manager Azhar Zia said such minor leakages occurred in many plants around the world.”

      I guess Azhar Zia will probably have to look for a new job after that statement. He accidentally spoke the truth, while thinking he was minimizing the severity of the situation.

  • arclight arclight

    i will tell you the only thing developing around this story is the censorship…nearly….well done enenews!!

  • Jebus Jebus

    Karachi N-power plant repaired

    KARACHI – Officials were forced on Thursday to repair a leak in its oldest nuclear power plant, lying on the outskirts of Karachi on the Arabian Sea coast, an official said. “An emergency had been declared yesterday after leakage of heavy water was reported,” a Karachi Nuclear Power Plant (KANUPP) official told AFP. “Our staff controlled the situation after a few hours and the emergency is over,” the official told AFP. “During the emergency no radioactivity was recorded. None of our staff is affected,” said the official.
    He said the plant had been closed for routine maintenance since October 5.

  • Jebus Jebus

    PPC expresses concern over leakage at KANUPP

    * Demand shutting down of plant to ward off risk to human, costal life

    KARACHI: The Pakistan Peace Coalition (PPC) has expressed concern over the leakage of heavy water from a feeder pipe of the Karachi Nuclear Power Plant (KANUPP) reactor and asked the government to shut it down.

    In a statement issued on Thursday, PPC General Secretary BM Kutty said that the nuclear power plant was actually non-productive and was posing serious threat to human life and coastal environment. Kutty said that the government had not provided any detail about the release of radiation from the plant. …\10\21\story_21-10-2011_pg7_28

  • Jebus Jebus

    PNRA inspectors” team to probe reactor”s leakages

    Pakistan Nuclear Regulatory Authority (PNRA) has dispatched a team of inspectors to investigate the root causes of leakages in the feeder pipe of Karachi Nuclear Power Plant (KANUPP) which forced the plant to shut down operations.

    The spokesman of PNRA said that the team would reach any conclusion after collecting evidence from spot.

    Karachi is likely to face additional power load shedding due to loss of 80-90 Mega Watts as plant has been shut down for 15-21 days after the leakage of heavy water from a feeder pipe.

    It has been learnt that the life of the plant completed its 30 years.

    However, the Pakistani engineers extended its life for ten more years by bringing in some changes in its internal design.

    An official of PNRA said that the causes of leakages were not clear.

    He said the leakages may be ‘design-based’.

    Such kind of leakages takes place inside the plant, he maintained…

  • Jebus Jebus


    Concerned about leak at nuclear plant, Pakistan Peace Coalition demands government to shut down facility

    KARACHI – Expressing concern over media reports that heavy water has started leaking from a feeder pipe of the reactor at the Karachi Nuclear Power Plant (KANUPP), the Pakistan Peace Coalition (PPC) has asked the government to shut down the nuclear power plant. “It is unproductive and posing a major threat to human lives and the coastal environment of Karachi,” PPC General Secretary BM Kutty said in a statement issued on Thursday. According to the plant’s spokesman, an emergency was imposed after leakage at KANUPP started around midnight on Tuesday during maintenance checks, but it was lifted after seven hours when the leak was brought under control and no radiation or damage was reported…

  • arclight arclight

    Underpowered and unsafe, Pakistan’s nuclear reactors are just big boys’ toysPakistan’s reactors provide only a tiny amount of energy at great health risk to millions, yet the government wants to build more….

    “There are two main reactors used for energy production in Pakistan: the ageing plant on the coast near Karachi (Kanupp) and the nuclear plant near Chashma Barrage on the Indus River (Chasnupp I). Between them, they provide only about 350 MW of energy, just 2% of Pakistan’s energy demand. A second nuclear reactor at Chashma (Chasnupp II) is being tested and should start operations soon. They are extremely costly, at about US $1bn for each of the Chasma reactors, plus they are very unsafe, according to two of the country’s top physicists who teach at the Lahore University of Management Sciences.

    “Kanupp only produces 50MW while Chasnupp I produces 300MW. Chasnupp II only came on line in March this year and will produce another 300MW as well,” says nuclear physicist Dr Pervez Hoodhboy.”

  • roxy

    More nukes going off? right, anyone care to pre-book a cancer ward? they will be all booked out soon, hospitals will be full, reality will be harsh for one and all, at the pace the governments are working towards this issue, we will all have cancer set in by the time something CONSTRUCTIVE is set in and played out. god help us, it will be a year since March sooner that you know it, times flying, so are the hot particles of plutonium and others we have never been exposed to, our human race wasnt supposed to be exposed to such harsh “sustances” therefore our bodies dont know how to handle them, and if im correct, an article from a while back said, these new substances of chemical compounds, lodge in your bones as your body accepts them as calcium deposits,,, ahhh wow, its pretty horrific.

  • roxy

    Third Fukushima worker dead,

    how many others are already well on the way?
    how about you? are you feeling well lately? a trip to your local GP might uncover an illness totally unrelated to radiation yet thats what caused it in the first place, you may never know.

    • uhoh

      I’ve had 2 medical incidents in the last 4 weeks. I’ve been wondering if they aren’t Fuku related. I’m in very good health. My only medical problem is high blood pressure which is controlled by a single medicine taken on a daily basis. 4 weeks ago, I felt totally fine then out of the clear blue, I started coughing up blood. Ended up in the hospital with a diagnosis of pneumonia. I was given a 10 day course of antibiotics which cleared the blood up after a week although the effect on my digestive system was another story. I’ve never ever had pneumonia before.

      Last week I started feeling like my heart was racing, had heavy chest pressure then my blood pressure went off the charts. Felt like I was having a heart attack. Ended up in the hospital again! They had to iv drugs into me to get the blood pressure down. Nobody knows why it shot up like that all of a sudden. I was given an ekg, echo cardiogram, and stress test but my heart checked out totally fine. My family doctor said its very unusual for the high blood pressure to give someone the symptoms I experienced. Most folks don’t even realize their pressure is up and just go on to have a stroke. I now have to take a 2nd pill to keep the pressure down.

      I’m starting to worry that all of this is Fuku related and that I’m one of those unfortunate souls who is extra sensitive to the radiation. Since April I’ve been taking nascent iodine, spirulina, and drinking baking soda and water to cleanse. I have a geiger counter. Our readings here aren’t near as bad as some other parts of the country. Why is it that all of a sudden I’m getting all of these illnesses when I’ve been so healthy before this? Since getting out of the hospital I’ve been having a wierd issue with a very funny feeling in my chest. It feels like I’m having a panic attack but in my chest only. Horrible feeling that comes and goes and doctor has no explanation for it. Thinks its just my nerves. Wonderful!

      • uhoh

        On a side note, I never realized it until I did the stress test myself, but they dose you with radiation directly into your veins as part of the test. They wait a half hour then take “xrays”. Only no film is needed as the machine is making pictures based on the gamma radiation emitting from your body! Yikes! Then you run on the treadmill and they repeat the xray thing, giving more radioactive isotopes into the vein, waiting and taking pictures. Anybody have any idea which products one would use to try to cleanse gamma radiation from the body? I tried to find out exactly what isotope they use but nobody knew the answer. I did notice that all the nurses that worked in the area had what looked like dosimeters on. Thanks …………..

        • roxy

          ahh, not good mate, where abouts are you ?

        • oscar419

          Thorium….. They wanted to dose me with it for my stress test. I guess it raises heart rate for those who can not do serious physical exercise such as myself. I still can not figure out what they give you to reverse what it does to your heart rate. I also had something injected into me for a full body scan but do not know what.

          Never again… My new personal policy is if the departmental employees have dosimeters, inject substances from a stainless steel cartridge and operates machinery from the next room over is now a HUGE no no for me: my body is compromised enough without voluntarily introducing radioactive schwill to it.

          Also the stress is unrelated to my condition, it seems like a particular doctor is ordering as many tests as possible to help maintain the low cost of health care and insurance here in the states. No wonder my state only has two companies that offer health insurance….

          • uhoh

            I can see how you’d adopt that personal policy. It seemed kind of surreal knowing they were injecting radioactivity directly into my veins. Funny thing is, if it wasn’t for Fuku and all I’ve learned since then, I probably wouldn’t have given it a 2nd thought.

      • StillJill StillJill

        uhoh,….I shall be praying for you, you’re on the right path taking the care you are-IMO.

        Calming your heart, pressure, and rate is obviously what’s needed here. Thankfully, you don’t HAVE to take the benzodiazepines they are soon to prescribe. Do you drink coffee, or soda? Might want to do a control study, and stop for a few weeks ’til your body self-regulates, yes? 🙂 Your prior GREAT health will carry you a L O N G way, eh?

        The body knows the way!

        I’d consider the hot soak in baking soda/epsom salt, with a window, door open, or fan on. Lots of resting and positive thoughts!

        Be Blessed friend!

        • uhoh

          Thanks for the prayers. They’re sincerely appreciated. Yes, I’m a big coffee drinker. As in I drink a whole pot of black coffee all by myself most days. Well, at least I did. The hospital docs told me to cut way back so I’ve been limiting myself to 2-3 cups a day since I got out. I’m afraid to go totally cold turkey as I hear that can lead to some really nasty headaches. You’ve got me wondering though if the funny feeling in the chest might be my body adjusting to less caffeine. The backing soda/epsom salt baths sound like a good idea. I’ll definitely give those a try.

          • StillJill StillJill

            Great! You’re doing a lot, especially the coffee cut back! Way to go! Yes, headaches from he11 when we ‘cold-turkey’ caffeine!

            I agree with Zaddik too however. When my body does a ‘freak-out’ like that,…I give ‘her’ a break from all supplements. Usually only a day or two is needed however for me. But I let my body decide. I take her at a compassionate pace these days! Glad to hear you are too friend!

      • zaadik

        Stop taking iodine NOW!!! Inform your physician that you have been dosing yourself with iodine and how much iodine you have been taken.

        Iodine can kill you, folks.

        Oh, and to those of you who consistently report a metallic taste in your mouth: it is a known, common side-effect of taking iodine. Have YOU been taking any?

        “Systemic effects of oral stable iodine exposure, other than after massive acute iodine overload such as in
        cases of attempted suicides (see Section, are on the thyroid gland and are discussed in the section
        on Endocrine Effects. As noted in the introduction to this chapter of the profile, adverse effects on a wide
        variety of other organ systems can result from iodine-induced disorders of the thyroid gland, including
        disturbances of the skin, cardiovascular system, pulmonary system, kidneys, gastrointestinal tract, liver,
        blood, neuromuscular system, central nervous system, skeleton, male and female reproductive systems,
        and numerous endocrine organs, including the pituitary and adrenal glands. (Braverman and Utiger 2000).”

        • ion jean ion jean

          Safer to supplement natural iodine from Atlantic Ocean seaweed like dulse…chew it whole and dry, chop it in your salad or take the powder; 780% RDA in one serving

          • StillJill StillJill

            Absolutely right. Natural seaweed like dulse or kelp,….but soon it will all be irradiated. Stock up friends–we can do this! 🙂

          • uhoh

            Never heard of dulse before but I will check it out. We only have 2 health food stores in town and both are pretty small but if it’s available in powder I can probably order off the internet. Thanks for the info.

        • uhoh

          Thanks for the info zaadik but I really don’t think it’s the iodine giving me problems. They actually tested my thyroid while I was in the hospital and everything is fine there. I chose nascent iodine because its supposed to be the gentlest form of supplementation. I use sea salt at home and don’t eat out very often. So I’m not getting the iodine one normally would from table salt. I’m also taking the minimum dose – one drop which equals 400 mcg. Everyone else seems to agree with you though 🙂 I believe its time to switch to kelp!

      • Au Au

        I am sorry to hear about the last goings on with you. Good that you are under proper medical care. I was thinking that I would ask the pharmacist about possible interaction between your BP med and baking soda and Iod. Might be a link there. Or maybe you already did ask.

        Since it is diagnosed as “nerves” a few innocuous natural calming things are Bach Flower Rescue Remedy (will not and cannot interact with meds) and Lavender Essential oil, topical. Doterra brand is pure without fillers and certified pure therpeutic grade. Cheaper lavender could be mostly carrier oil and/or synthetic. Lavender is safe even for babies (soles of feet-no worries). It can be put undiluted on the temples, chest, forehead, wrists, soles of feet. Anywhere really, except the eyes. If your doctor said it was ok to walk, that is also a good way to get cortisol down (one of the hormones that goes up when we get anxiously worried). Listen to some nice music and try to take a mind vacation. Chamomile tea instead of coffee. Getting grounded for at least an hour a day is good, also, for nerves pumping up cortisol (barefoot on the earth). Getting kind of cold for that.

        Having said that, it is hard to feel calm about increasing radiation. Trying to have inner peace, myself, with that, but it is pretty damn hard.

        Yesterday, we had a 239CPM. Today my lymph glands are swollen at the back corners of my jaws. Spouse has a sore throat and is achy. My nostrils were burning yesterday. That is not the first time that has happened. Didn’t have a GC before to see if levels were up. Now, I SEE why. I, rarely, get sick other than that time I almost died from something I picked up in the ocean in the south of France. That was a dilly.

        There was a radiologist on here before and from what this person said, the medical radiation has a much shorter half life. Maybe google that and see what you find out on that. It might already have degraded. I haven’t a clue so I don’t want to steer you wrong…

        • StillJill StillJill

          Very helpful info there AU–Thank you. Will add the lavender-

          • Au Au

            You are welcome StillJill! I keep thinking I will try that bath. I have all the ingredients except the bathtub. LOL. jk. : )

          • StillJill StillJill

            AU,….I am NOT kidding,….all I have is a stand up shower! I have had to become a ‘tub surfer’, rather than a ‘couch surfer’. Quite humbling,….but survival DEMANDS it.
            One of my fav. AA sayings is: “You can’t save your face and your ass at the same time”. Hear that one Japan?

            Saving my ass today,….my face was killing me.

        • uhoh

          Chamomile … a good idea and I actually have some of that here. Hope you’re feeling better soon AU. 239 CPM is high. The most I’ve ever recorded here is 40 CPM.

      • Bobby1

        Radiation is in the food, it doesn’t matter where in the country you are anymore. The worst is in meat, dairy, mushrooms, and root vegetables like potatoes and carrots. Most of the produce comes from California.

        In addition to this load, doctors are now irradiating you. It’s all perfectly safe, they say. Just like the nukesters say Fuku radiation is perfectly safe.

  • jtb

    The book ‘Desperate Journeys, Abandoned Souls’ tells of what happens to men that are marooned with no protection from the cold weather. If they survive, after their clothes eventually rot away the hair on their arms, legs, backs- all over their entire bodies- begins to grow out thick as a natural reaction, until in time they look like wild, bearded, long-haired APES.

    Sometimes I think about this when I see men in white lab coats standing in front of ridiculously complicated, dangerous machines.

  • Stlouieishot

    isnt the leaking reactor in pakistan used for producing medical isotpes? if thats the case it runs with 20% enriched uranium which is almost as dangerous as MOX fuel

    • arclight arclight


      good point… more mox !! the nuclear industry just keeps on giving!!

      • arclight arclight

        should point out that these type of reactors make highly corrosive isotopic compounds…maybe they have a problem with corrosion in this 39 year old reactor!! only one year to go!!

        • arclight arclight

          only one year to go! lol wonder why they hacked there own site?? to clarify (thanks for your post above jebus)

          ” has been learnt that the life of the plant completed its 30 years.

          However, the Pakistani engineers extended its life for ten more years by bringing in some changes in its internal design.”

          sounds like tho extend the life of this puppy reactor…misleading press releases…hmmmmm!

  • arclight arclight

    i am recommending this link to my pakistani friends…should be interesting… caught in the act… what has the iaea got to say about this then???? lol …not alot except the pakistani nuclear authoities are doing a wonderful job and are under our ever watchful eye…..the new reactors were built with chinese help…as an aside!!??

    • Hemisfear311 Hemisfear311

      Mantras of the PNP’s:
      (and what they really are saying)

      We are monitoring the situation carefully
      (We are watching, looking, observing, but nothing more)

      No health hazard has been reported yet
      (We know how bad it is, but will not tell you)

      No immediate health risk
      (This will kill you slowly over a period of time)

      Minor, Insignificant, Imall, Inconsequential
      (Much worse than we’ll ever admit)

  • oscar419

    nOOOOO…someone save the hash plants

  • StillJill StillJill

    Yes, please do! 🙂

  • nuckelchen nuckelchen

    sensi seeds in a-dam got them in the bank.
    what was about the papers from the cia and the therapy of cancer with thc?
    works, or?
    and a mox question rumors in my head last days:
    could it be that mox is only in use on the northern hemisphere?
    that would be hardcore suspected.
    and would shows the high dangers of the mox-shit.
    that it will be so danger by alltime leaking that they can handle it only in a area that allmost pimped by nukes since the early sixties…
    because here in germany it is impossible to bring a mox plant to the courts.the background radiacs are to high to fix out what part comes from the mox.
    the gov and the nuke-lobby said that.

    • ion jean ion jean

      LIVE FREE my friend…the time has long past for us to just do what we’re told

      All i know is i want the dinosaur death cannon reactor in my state shut down ASAP no matter what federal unconstitutional/ politically slanted law may say