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Indybay FeatureRelated Categories: California | Environment & Forest Defense
Dangerous One San Onofre Nuclear Reactor Shut Down After Suspected Leak-Safety Threatened
The dangerous nuclear power plant San Onofre had to shut down after a release. The utility Southern California Edison said the leak is safe.
One San Onofre Nuclear Reactor Shut Down After Suspected Leak
A possible leak prompted precautionary measures, yet there is no danger to the public, officials say.
Southern California Edison, operator of the San Onofre Nuclear Generating Station near Camp Pendleton, announced tonight it has begun a precautionary shutdown of Unit 3 because sensors detected a possible leak in one of the unit's steam generator tubes.
"The potential leak poses no imminent danger to the public or plant workers," according to an SCE statement. There has been no release to the atmosphere."
San Onofre personnel will evaluate the cause of the leak and the steps required to repair it and resume operations, according to a spokesman for the Rosemead-based utility.
Unit 2 is currently offline for a planned maintenance, refueling and technology upgrade outage. SCE has ample reserve power to meet customer needs while Unit 3 is offline, according to the spokesman.
The Nuclear Regulatory Commission was immediately informed of the shutdown, SCE reported.
New 640-ton steam generators were installed in 2010 in the north dome and the ones in the south dome were replaced in 2009 as part of a $674-million program to upgrade the plant's four steam generators, which make steam to turn the electric turbines.
It is not clear from initial reports what part of the steam generator could be leaking, but there are two courses of water sealed off from one another within the generator.
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The water that actually touches the radioactive fuel rods is sealed in a series of tubes that, in turn, transfer heat to boil water in the second course. That non-radioactive water becomes the steam that turns the massive turbine blades.
A third course of seawater condenses the steam in another part of the plant.
The plant is set to shut itself down at the first sign of problems, as it did in response to the massive blackout that plunged Southern California into darkness in September.
— San Clemente Patch Editor Adam Townsend, Camp Pendleton Patch Editor Daniel Woolfolk and City News Service wrote this report
Related Topics: Emergency, San Onofre Nuclear Generating Station, Shutdown, Songs, leak, andnuclear
For more information go to http://www.sanonofresafety.org
This plant has the worst safety conditions of any plant in the United States. For more information go to