Connecticut senator seeks answers on Y2K readiness of Millstone nuclear power plant -- L. Rosencrance : LUSENET : TimeBomb 2000 (Y2000) : One Thread

Connecticut senator seeks answers on Y2K readiness of Millstone nuclear power plant

By Linda Rosencrance

U.S. Sen. Christopher J. Dodd (D-Conn.) today asked Northeast Utilities and the Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) to provide him with specific information on the measures they've taken to ensure that Northeast's Millstone nuclear power pant in Connecticut is ready for the year 2000 date change.

In letters to the utility and the commission, Dodd said he'd heard from a number of constituents expressing anxiety about the Y2K problem and its potential impact on plant safety. He said constituents told him about protests at Millstone by people concerned that safety at plant will be compromised because of Y2K problems.

Dodd added that he's concerned that the plant's biennial emergency drill was postponed from September of this year to March 2000.

Dodd asked for responses to his letters by Dec. 6.

"...[G]iven the potential harm even one nuclear accident can cause, I want to be especially clear about the need for added vigilance at this time. Heightened public anxiety about the large number of unknown factors means that even those regulators and industries which put a premium on public safety at all times must be especially sensitive to the Y2K issue," Dodd said in his letters.

However, the NRC has already said that all 103 power plants it regulates are Y2K-ready. NRC spokeswoman Diane Screnci said the agency's Web site has information about the steps it has taken to make sure all the nuclear power plants are ready for Y2K, although she said there isn't specific information about each plant.

Terrence McIntosh, a spokesman for Northeast Utilities, said Millstone is Y2K-ready and that the utility had sent out press release to various media outlets to alert them to that fact. He added that the postponed drill had nothing to do with Y2K -- although the utility has conducted Y2K preparedness drills at Millstone -- but was a regularly scheduled emergency drill.

"Sen. Dodd is responding to his constituents. But here we have some antinuclear groups whose agendas are to shut down the plant," McIntosh said. "Millstone has been Y2K-ready since June 30, 1999. We have participated in several Y2K-specific drills.The NRC asked some utilities to postpone their regularly scheduled emergency drills because it did not have enough staff to monitor all the drills."

McIntosh said the utility's chairman, Michael Morris, will respond to Dodd in a letter with specific information by Dec. 6. The utility company is headquartered in West Springfield, Mass.

-- Brooklyn (, December 01, 1999


Yesterdays post is at:

-- Uncle Bob (UNCLB0B@Tminus31&counting.down), December 01, 1999.

SYSOP, please delete. I did not see the previous one.

-- Brooklyn (, December 01, 1999.


This is the NRC/Millstone site. BLUE

-- BLUE (, December 01, 1999.

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