Pilgrim’s Juno Storm Mishap (Jan, 2015) was a “Near-miss”

The NRC found 8 violations of safety regulations by Entergy. The Union of Concerned Scientists (UCS) has issued commentary by Dave Lochbaum on this event entitled Nuclear Near-Miss at Pilgrim which states:

This event revealed too many inexcusable problems at Pilgrim. For example, the operators restarted the Reactor Core Isolation Cooling (RCIC) system, but failed to open the valve supplying cooling water to the system’s components. It’s the second step in the procedure, but the operators failed to follow it and open the valve. And the control room received two separate alarms indicating that the valve alignment might be wrong, but the operators responding to the alarms did not notice that the cooling water valve was closed.

UCS also made available a 54-slide slideshow based on the NRC’s report, and Mr. Lochbaum explained what the term “near miss” means.

NRC Special Inspection Report with “low to moderate safety significance that may require additional inspections, regulatory actions, and oversight”.

Shortly after this NEAR MISS occurred, Entergy spokesperson Lauren Burm said, “Plant conditions were stable and there was never any threat at all to the safety of plant workers or the public.” while admitting that Entergy failed to report to the NRC that it had lost “instrument air”, used to control many valves and instruments. Clearly, Entergy thinks nothing can possibly go wrong.

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