13.09.2018_No182 / News in Brief

US Regulator ‘Reviewing Preparations’ As Hurricane Florence Approaches Nuclear States

Unplanned Events & Incidents

13 Sep (NucNet): The US nuclear regulator’s resident inspectors at nuclear stations in the states of North Carolina, South Carolina and Virginia are reviewing the plant operators’ preparations in advance of Hurricane Florence, projected to make landfall in the area by the end of this week.

The Nuclear Regulatory Commission is sending additional inspectors and will activate its regional incident response centre in Atlanta to provide around-the-clock support during the storm, a statement said.

There are 16 commercial nuclear power reactors in North Carolina, South Carolina and Virginia, the states expected to suffer the most damage from Florence.

The NRC said Florence will most likely affect Duke Energy’s two-unit Brunswick and single-unit Harris nuclear stations in North Carolina and, if it turns north, Dominion Energy’s two-unit Surry station in Virginia.

The NRC said: “Plant procedures require operators to shut down the reactor well before hurricane-force winds arrive on site.

“In preparing for Hurricane Florence staff [at nuclear stations] are working through their severe weather procedures, including ensuring that all loose debris and equipment have been removed or secured, and conducting inspections of important systems and equipment.”

NRC inspectors are verifying that all preparations have been completed, and the facilities’ emergency diesel generators are available with ample fuel if the storm affects off-site power.

The NRC said it has also been in touch with officials at the Global Nuclear Fuels-America facility near Wilmington, North Carolina, the research reactor at North Carolina State University and other NRC licensees in the area to verify their preparations for the storm.

Florence, one of the strongest storms on the Eastern Seaboard in decades, is a Category 3 hurricane with winds of 200 kph. It is predicted to deliver tropical-storm-force winds by noon today (Thursday) to North Carolina's coast, and hurricane-force winds and dangerous storm surges by late Thursday or early Friday.

Related reports in the NucNet database (available to subscribers):

  • Nuclear Helped US Through Winter Storm Jonas, Says NEI (News in Brief No.21, 01 February 2016)




David Dalton

© NucNet a.s.b.l Brussels, Belgium