‘No Concerns’ After Nuke Shutdown

Tuesday, September 18, 2012 @ 05:09 PM gHale


The Seabrook Station nuclear power plant experienced a reactor trip Friday night, according to the Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC).

The trip occurred when a feedwater regulating valve shut when it should not have due to a computer card failure, the NRC said.

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The New Hampshire-based plant was about to shut down for a refueling and maintenance outage, so it just decided to keep the nuke down for an early outage.

The NRC said one of its resident inspectors assigned to Seabrook traveled to the site Friday night to independently verify that the shutdown was being safely and effectively carried out and did not identify any concerns.

In August, the NRC reported Seabrook would receive additional oversight after a “white” finding following an inspection during an emergency exercise.

During the April exercise, plant personnel did not develop and make proper initial protective action recommendations to states, based on radiological conditions at the time, the NRC said. However, their recommendations did become correct as the exercise went on.

During these exercises, the NRC assesses the company’s on-site emergency response capabilities, including the ability to evaluate and respond to a significant event, and to communicate what is going on to state, county and local authorities. Meanwhile, the Federal Emergency Management Agency assesses off-site response.

The “white” inspection finding has to do with during the company’s critique of the exercise, conducted April 17-19, plant personnel failed to identify the error regarding the incorrect protective action recommendations. As the NRC inspection report on the exercise states, this represents a “performance deficiency that was reasonably within NextEra’s ability to foresee and prevent.”



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