Nuclear Regulatory Commission - Press Release
No: II-16-030 May 16, 2016
CONTACT: Roger Hannah 404-997-4417
Joey Ledford 404-997-4416
NRC Schedules Meeting with TVA to Discuss Watts Bar Work Environment Improvement Plan
The Nuclear Regulatory Commission staff has scheduled a meeting with Tennessee Valley Authority officials for Tuesday, May 24, to discuss TVA’s response to an NRC “chilling effect” letter issued in March to the Watts Bar nuclear plant.
The plant is located near Spring City, Tenn., about 60 miles southwest of Knoxville.
The NRC had found that some operations employees may not have felt free to raise safety concerns, and some licensed operators may have been unduly influenced and directed by sources external to the control room. That hesitancy to raise concerns is what the NRC calls a chilling effect.
The NRC met with Watts Bar officials on March 22 and issued the letter on March 23. That letter requested a response outlining what TVA is doing to address the concerns.
During the May 24 meeting, the Watts Bar staff plans to brief the NRC on the current status and progress of actions to improve the chilled work environment in the operations department at the plant.
The meeting is scheduled to be held in the NRC’s Region II office at 245 Peachtree Center Avenue NE in Atlanta at 10 a.m.
The public may observe the meeting and NRC officials will be available after the business portion to answer any questions. For people unable to attend, a toll-free teleconference line will be available. Anyone wishing to listen to the meeting should contact Alan Blamey by May 23 at 404-997- 4415 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
This is misleading because it claims all safety systems responded the way they were supposed to. However the high pressure injection system was inoperable (although not called upon). This is how accident get started.
Power Reactor Event Number: 51925
Region: 1 State: PA
Unit: [ ]  [ ]
RX Type:  GE-4, GE-4
NRC Notified By: CARL YOUNG
HQ OPS Officer: HOWIE CROUCH Notification Date: 05/13/2016
Notification Time: 05:00 [ET]
Event Date: 05/13/2016
Event Time: 01:10 [EDT]
Last Update Date: 05/13/2016
Emergency Class: NON EMERGENCY
10 CFR Section:
50.72(b)(2)(iv)(B) - RPS ACTUATION - CRITICAL
50.72(b)(3)(v)(C) - POT UNCNTRL RAD REL
50.72(b)(2)(iv)(A) - ECCS INJECTION
ART BURRITT (R1DO)
SCOTT MORRIS (NRR)
Unit SCRAM Code RX CRIT Initial PWR Initial RX Mode Current PWR Current RX Mode
2 M/R Y 100 Power Operation 0 Hot Shutdown
MANUAL REACTOR SCRAM DUE AFTER LOSS OF AN ESSENTIAL MOTOR CONTROL CENTER
"At approximately 0110 hours [EDT] on May 13, 2016, Susquehanna Steam Electric Station Unit Two reactor was manually scrammed by plant operators due to a sustained loss of AC power to essential plant loads. Power to MCC 2B246 was lost at 2355 on May 12, 2016, resulting in a loss of Drywell cooling. Drywell pressure increased to 1.3 psig when operators placed the mode switch to the shutdown position to manually SCRAM the reactor. All rods inserted as expected. Reactor water level lowered to -27 inches and was immediately restored by normal feedwater level control. Level 3 (+13 inch) PCIS isolations occurred, along with an initiation of the RCIC system (-30 inches). Once adequate level was verified, RCIC was overridden. Pressure was controlled with turbine bypass valves, and subsequently main steam line drains. All safety systems functioned as expected.
"The power loss also tripped Reactor Building HVAC, causing a loss of secondary containment differential pressure resulting in a loss of safety function.
"Due to the loss of drywell cooling, high drywell pressure actuations and a second reactor SCRAM signal, this signal was automatic, occurred at 0314 hours. HPCI [which automatically initiated on high drywell pressure] was subsequently overridden and declared inoperable, resulting in a loss of safety function. [HPCI did not inject into the vessel].
"The reactor is currently stable in Mode 3. Initial reports from the field indicate a phase to phase fault on the MCC 2B246 bus bars."
The licensee has notified the NRC Resident Inspector and will be issuing a press release.
NRC Proposes $3,500 Civil Penalty for Connecticut FirmOver Nuclear Gauge Security Control DeficienciesSubmitted by webEditor on Mon, 05/23/2016 - 21:43
Press Release I-16-001: NRC Proposes $3,500 Civil Penalty for Connecticut FirmOver Nuclear Gauge Security Control Deficiencies
NRC Proposes $42,000 Civil Penalty for Connecticut Company for Willful Import, Possession and Distribution ViolationsSubmitted by webEditor on Mon, 05/23/2016 - 21:40
Press Release 16-028: NRC Proposes $42,000 Civil Penalty for Connecticut Company for Willful Import, Possession and Distribution Violations
Nuclear Regulatory Commission - Press Release
No. I-16-014 May 13, 2016
Contact: Diane Screnci, 610-337-5330 Neil Sheehan, 610-337-5331
NRC Proposes $7,000 Civil Penalty for Violation at West Virginia Manufacturing Facility
The Nuclear Regulatory Commission staff is proposing a $7,000 fine for an Atlanta-based company for a violation of agency requirements. The violation involves maintenance inappropriately done on a fixed nuclear gauge at the firm’s manufacturing facility in Fairmont, W.V.
Based on the results of an NRC inspection and investigation carried out at Novelis Corp.’s Fairmont plant, the agency is also issuing a Severity Level III violation to the company.
Novelis performs aluminum sheet and light-gauge fin/foil cold rolling activities at the facility. The company held an NRC license for the possession and use of fixed nuclear gauges at this location. The gauges are used to measure the thickness of the sheet metal products.
The NRC inspection and investigation completed on Jan. 21, 2016, determined that on Sept. 12 and 13, 2014, there was a violation involving the deliberate actions of plant employees. Specifically, an engineering reliability and automation engineer directed an electrical technician to repair nuclear gauge components related to the radiological safety of the device even though Novelis’ NRC license prohibits such activities.
“Our reviews found that the plant employees involved understood the work they were undertaking was not permitted, but they proceeded with the repairs nonetheless in order to minimize the economic impact on the facility from the inoperable gauge,” Acting NRC Region I Administrator
David Lew said. “These activities could have resulted in unnecessary radiological exposure and possibly physical harm. This enforcement action serves as an important reminder of the need for gauge owners and users to adhere to license conditions meant to ensure the proper handling of nuclear materials.”
In a March 8, 2016, letter, Novelis acknowledged the violation occurred, but it disagreed that the employees acted deliberately. After reviewing the information, the NRC staff concluded that the enforcement action was still appropriate. Based on the apparent economic incentive for the violation, the NRC used discretion to double the fine from base amount of $3,500.
Novelis has notified the NRC of prompt and comprehensive corrective and preventive actions in response to the issue, including the termination of its NRC license, which occurred on Jan. 12, 2016.
The NRC is also issuing a Severity Level III violation to the engineering reliability and automation engineer who authorized the technician to work on the gauge.
The company is required to respond to the violation and proposed civil penalty within 30 days.
NRC and Army Corps of Engineers Issue Final Environmental Impact Statement for Bell Bend New ReactorSubmitted by webEditor on Mon, 05/23/2016 - 21:01
Press Release 16-019: NRC and Army Corps of Engineers Issue Final Environmental Impact Statement for Bell Bend New Reactor
YOU’RE INVITED: March for a Clean Energy Revolution … with the Nuclear-Free, Carbon-Free Contingent!Submitted by webEditor on Mon, 05/23/2016 - 20:58
Nuclear-Free, Carbon-Free Contingent to People’s Climate March
Second National Grassroots Conference Call
Monday, May 23, 2016 -- 7pm Eastern
May 11, 2016
Please contact Tim Judson at TimJ@nirs.org to join this call.
The March for a Clean Energy Revolution in Philadelphia on July 24, 2016 – right before the Democratic National Convention starts.
This march is our greatest chance to put a nuclear-free, carbon-free energy policy on the agenda in this year’s elections. Thousands of anti-fracking, climate justice, and clean energy activists are mobilizing for the march -- and we need to be there too!
NIRS is hosting the nuclear-free, carbon-free contingent at the march. We absolutely must put the dangers of nuclear power front and center in the national debate.
We will host the second national grassroots conference call on organizing the nuclear-free, carbon-free contingent on Monday, May 23 at 7pm Eastern.
Two years ago, thousands of us mobilized for the People’s Climate March in New York City, and made the nuclear-free, carbon-free message at the core of the largest climate mobilization in U.S. history. Ultimately, we got the EPA to take nuclear power out of the Clean Power Plan – and kept nuclear power out of the 2015 Global Climate Treaty in Paris!
We will bring you up-to-date with our latest information on the march itself, plus our activities. Buses and carpools are being organized from cities throughout the east coast and Midwest, which you can get plugged into.
Bring your updates, ideas, questions, thoughts and concerns to this call!
Thanks, and we’ll talk on Monday the 23rd,
Michael Mariotte and Tim Judson
P.S. Our Facebook group page for the nuclear-free, carbon-free contingent is being updated for the Clean Energy Revolution march: https://www.facebook.com/groups/nukefreeclimatefreemarch/ If you’re on Facebook, please join it and post your information.
Susquehanna Steam Electric Station, Units 1 and 2 - Relief Requests for the Third 10-Year Inservice Inspection Interval (CAC Nos. MF6302 through MF6307)Submitted by webEditor on Mon, 05/23/2016 - 20:52
Susquehanna Steam Electric Station, Units 1 and 2 - Relief Requests for the Third 10-Year Inservice Inspection Interval (CAC Nos. MF6302 through MF6307)
Peach Bottom Atomic Power Station, Units 2 and 3 – Issuance of Amendments re: Inservice Leak and Hydrostatic Testing OperationSubmitted by webEditor on Mon, 05/23/2016 - 20:49
Peach Bottom Atomic Power Station, Units 2 and 3 – Issuance of Amendments re: Inservice Leak and Hydrostatic Testing Operation
Press Release No. 16-025: NRC, Pentagon Sign MOU Outlining Roles in Unlicensed Radioactive Material Cleanup at Military Bases