Inspectors Find 'Unusual' Wear on Tubes at Calif. Nuclear Plant

"LOS ANGELES — Unusual wear has been found on hundreds of tubes that carry radioactive water at Southern California’s San Onofre Unit 2 nuclear plant, raising questions about the integrity of equipment the company installed in a multimillion-dollar makeover in 2009.

The disclosure came two days after a tube leak at the plant’s other unit prompted operators to shut down the reactor as a precaution. A tiny amount of radiation could have escaped, but officials say workers and the public were not endangered.

The problems at Unit 2 were discovered during inspections of a steam generator, after the plant 45 miles north of San Diego was taken off-line for maintenance and refueling. The two huge steam generators at Unit 2, each containing 9,700 tubes, were replaced in fall 2009, and a year later in its twin plant, Unit 3, as part of a $670 million overhaul."

Michael R. Blood reports for the Assoociated Press February 2, 2012.

SEE ALSO:

Illinois: "Officials: Faulty Insulator Caused US Nuclear Reactor Shutdown, NRC Inspecting Water Pumps" (AP)

"Nuclear Regulator Estimates Low Level of Tritium Released at Stalled Northern Illinois Reactor" (AP)

"Illinois Nuclear Reactor Shutdown Probed" (CBS)

Illinois: "NRC: Radioactive Release From Byron Shutdown Safe" (AP)

"California Nuclear Plant Shuts Down Reactor as Precaution" (Reuters)

"No Threat From Gas Leak at California Nuclear Plant, Feds Say" (CNN)

New York: "Nuclear Agency Requires Fire Safety Upgrades at Indian Point" (ENS)

"Group Appeals To Florida Supreme Court in Effort To Block Nuclear Plant Prepayment Fees" (Palm Beach Post)

"Many Unanswered Questions in Crystal River Nuclear Plant Settlement" (Tampa Bay Times)

"NRC Wants U.S. Nuclear Operators To Adopt New Seismic Model" (Reuters)

Source: AP, 02/03/2012