NRC investigating nuclear reactor water pumps via Carmi


The Nuclear Regulatory Commission is launching a special inspection into how some equipment responded to a power failure at a northern Illinois nuclear reactor.

NRC spokeswoman Viktoria Mitlyng says some water pumps at the Byron Generating Station switched off when the Unit 2 reactor lost power Monday, then came back on without being manually reset.

She says the pumps are designed to switch off after a set amount of time if there is an undervoltage, but normally must be reset.

She says there was no danger because the plant about 95 miles northwest of Chicago has multiple backup pumps, but the NRC wants all pumps to perform properly.

Exelon Energy officials say they’ve replaced a faulty electricity insulator at the plant that was responsible for the outage.

Workers from Illinois’ Emergency Management Agency are collecting water and vegetation samples to check for radioactive tritium around the plant.

Agency Director Jonathon Monken said Tuesday that there’s no reason to believe harmful levels of tritium were released from a stalled reactor at the Byron Generating Station.

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