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Brunswick Nuclear Plant learning from Fukushima, dealing with own problems

SOUTHPORT, NC (WWAY) — After the disaster at the Fukushima nuclear power plant in Japan last year, Progress Energy is trying to make sure nothing like that ever happens here. But with both the reactors at the Brunswick Nuclear Plant having been shut down recently, we wanted to know how Progress Energy is addressing its own issues.

“We are now, based on learnings from Fukushima, assessing whether our understanding of flooding, seismic events in today’s technology is accurate or needs to be changed,” Brunswick Nuclear Plant Vice President Michael Annacone said at a briefing wednesday to discuss the ongoing response to the Fukushima disaster. “Every time there’s a challenge in our industry, no matter where it happens, we’re accountable to understand what happened, learn from it and to continue to enhance the safety of our plant.”

Progress Energy was clear on the actions it’s taking in response to the Fukushima disaster, but there are still issues at the plant that need to be addressed.

In the past few months, both of its reactors have been shut down. The plant’s unit one reactor was shut down last November because of a mishap caused by nine unqualified workers.

“There was an assumption that these people are experienced,” Annacone said. “They’ve used the equipment before, but they weren’t officially and formally trained on it.”

Annacone says the employees were all re-trained.

Reactor two shut down last week.

“This current issue is purely an equipment failure on an electrical panel in the plant,” Annacone said.

Power to unit two has since been restored. Annacone says the company is looking into what caused the electrical equipment failure that led to last week’s reactor shut down.

More: continued here

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