Not to worry; 'State's nukes secure' | WisCommunity

Not to worry; 'State's nukes secure'

That's the "good news" from the nuclear industry, via Tom Content of the Journal Sentinel.

What happened in Japan couldn't happen here, they assure us.

Sing it, to the tune of Okie from Muskogee:

We don't have tsunamis in Wisconsin,

Never an earthquake will you see

Tornadoes are still the roughest kind of weather

And nuclear power's still clean, safe and free

Just a little food for thought, though. There was no earthquake or tsunami at Three Mile Island. Not at Chernobyl, either.

Just fallible human beings operating a very complicated, technical process where there is very little room for error.

The Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC), which inspects the nation's 102 operating reactors, has only issued five "red findings," the most serious safety warning, since it began using that system. Three of the five red warnings have gone to Wisconsin's Point Beach (pictured).

In bureaucratic terms, the NRC says a red finding has a "high safety significance." How high? Well, there is no color higher than red on the scale.

This report is from three months ago:

One of two reactors at the Point Beach nuclear plant remained shut down Friday after a problem surfaced as crews were restarting the unit earlier this week...

The Unit 2 reactor at Point Beach shut down on Monday afternoon because of a problem with the control rods inserting into the nuclear reactor. Rods are inserted into the reactor to stop the fission process during a nuclear plant shutdown. >p> But a test revealed the rods were not inserting properly.

As you watch the TV reports and explanations of what is happening in Japan, keep in mind that there are three reactors on Lake Michigan which generally operate in much the same way.


March 15, 2011 - 11:39am