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WaPo: NRC directs quake-hit North Anna nuke plant to inspect supports for Reactor Pressure Vessel — No “significant” problems?

Published: November 6th, 2011 at 1:26 pm ET
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Nov. 6 — The quake-hit North Anna nuclear plant in Virginia has yet to restart, and the Washington Post provides some answers for the delay.

According to the NRC’s lead inspector at North Anna, “Reviews are in progress. However, the staff has not identified any significant safety concerns” after the quake.

The NRC official overseeing the inspection team, said plant’s operator was “directed” by the NRC “to perform inspections on an underground steam tunnel and on support struts holding up one of the nuclear reactor pressure vessels”.

“The company had not adequately inspected those areas,” reports The Post.

Once again, the NRC qualifies the statement by saying it found no “significant” problems.

“The company sent small robots into the pool that holds nuclear fuel in the Unit 2 reactor and found no damage to the containment structure or the nuclear fuel,” according to Dominion spokesman Richard Zuercher.

“The NRC told the company it did not need to perform similar inspections inside the Unit 1 reactor, Zuercher said,” reported The Post. It’s unclear why only one will be inspected — Perhaps suspected damage at Unit 2 prompted the inspection? Or did the inspection find Unit 2 in such great shape that there is no way damage could have occurred in Unit 1? Most would probably say it’s a good idea to check it out… just in case.

Published: November 6th, 2011 at 1:26 pm ET
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6 comments to WaPo: NRC directs quake-hit North Anna nuke plant to inspect supports for Reactor Pressure Vessel — No “significant” problems?