Perry Nuke Leak Forces Shut Down

Monday, June 24, 2013 @ 02:06 PM gHale


The Perry Nuclear Power Plant shut down last weekend after workers found a small leak.

Workers discovered the leak Saturday at 10:50 p.m. in a small reactor coolant vent line at the Lake County, OH, facility, according to a filing with the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC).

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The plant stated in the filing that steam was coming from the vent line that comes off the top of the “recirc flow control valve.” The leak appeared to be coming from a weld in the line.

As a result, the plant went into a controlled shutdown at 2 a.m. Sunday. The NRC classified this incident as a “non-emergency.”

The plant tweeted this information Monday: “There are no public or environmental safety impacts or injuries to employees as a result. We are currently investigating the issue.”

This is not the first incident at Perry. Just a few weeks ago, officials ended an investigation into an incident where they found goldfish swimming in a pitcher of radioactive water in a restricted area.

Two contact workers, both foremen, confessed to smuggling five goldfish into the power plant in April during an extended maintenance shutdown. Another four workers admitted to knowing about the prank but not reporting it.

Todd Schneider, spokesman for Perry’s owner FirstEnergy Corp., said “comprehensive and thorough” interviews of a handful of suspected workers cracked the case.

“These contractors indicated they were playing a practical joke,” said Schneider.

The end result is the six could end up banned from working in another U.S. nuclear power plant, according to industry standards. And they could lose their union cards, preventing them from working on any union construction job, a union official said.



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