ISSN 2330-717X

Oversight At South Carolina Nuclear Plant Increased By NRC

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The U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission said that while it concluded that the Robinson plant operated safely in 2010, it has decided to increase its level of oversight and inspection at the South Carolina plant based on inspection findings and performance indicators.

“The NRC evaluates nuclear power plants in a systematic and detailed way each year,” said NRC Region II Administrator Victor McCree. “These reviews and the additional inspections and oversight at Robinson will ensure that the plant is operated in a way that protects people near the plant and the environment.”

The Robinson plant, which has one pressurized-water reactor, is located near Hartsville, South Carolina about 26 miles northwest of Florence. It is owned and operated by Progress Energy.

According to the NRC, the Robinson plant exceeded the threshold for unplanned reactor shutdowns during the year’s third quarter, which resulted in a “white” performance indicator, indicating a finding of low to moderate safety significance

The NRC uses color-coded inspection findings and performance indicators to assess plant performance. The colors start with “green,” which has very low safety significance, to “white,” “yellow” and “red,” based on increasing significance of the issues.

In addition, there were three “white” inspection findings at the plant, the NRC said.

The first “white” finding involved the failure to correct a problem with an emergency diesel generator.

The second and third “white” findings were identified after an NRC Augmented Inspection. The second involved the licensee’s failure to adequately design and implement operator training associated with reactor coolant pump seals.

The third finding was related to a failure to adequately implement required procedures following a reactor trip in March.

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