Virginia nuke shut down because of steam leak

The Unit 1 reactor at the North Anna nuclear power plant in Virginia had to be shut down on Monday due to a leaking steam line. The problem has now been fixed, and the reactor is ramping up again. It was listed at 8 per cent output on this morning’s NRC Reactor Status Report.

The most disturbing thing about the incident is that, although the leak occurred on Monday, nothing about the problem has appeared on the NRC’s Event Report page. There is also nothing about the problem on the NRC’s list of Preliminary Notifications.

Aside from some local television coverage, and that after the fact, there have been no media reports about the incident.

WTOP Radio added this comment:

It is the second partial shutdown since the August 5.8 magnitude earthquake that knocked both reactors off-line and raised concerns about the plant’s safety.

But the NRC spokesman says there’s no evidence right now that this latest incident had anything to do with quake damage.

North Anna is located in Louisa County about 90 miles from Washington. It has operated since the 1970s.

During the August earthquake, there was some damage to buildings at the site but no off-site radiation leak. The reactors were restarted in November after an investigation found no functional damage.



About Robert Singleton

By day, I work for a call center. In my spare time, I try to save my hometown (and planet) from a nearly constant onslaught of greedheads, lunatics and land developers. I live in a fictional town called Austin, Texas, where I go to way too many meetings.
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2 Responses to Virginia nuke shut down because of steam leak

  1. Ken says:

    There was no event report because it is not classified as and event. The leak was on a small air line for an Air operated valve not a steam leak that has been reported by uninformed news agencies. Faulty information is just going to cause a widespread panic.

    • Sorry, Ken. I have to disagree with you on this one. If power had to be reduced, it was a reportable event. Fact is, North Anna Unit 1 was at 100 per cent output on January 2, and was at 8 per cent on January 3. We can disagree on the severity of the Event, but Techncial Specification shutdowns and power decreases are always reported. There’s a difference between an event and an emergency. Mabybe we’ll get information on this incident on tomorrow’s NRC Event Reports. You can check the site after 6 am Eastern Time tomorrow if you’d like. The URL is

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