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Thursday, August 10, 2017

ENTERGY Plymouth Pilgrim Nuclear "...three worst-performing plants..."



This is the Dim Witted Republican Clown who now heads the Energy Department:



During the debates, Rick Perry couldn't remember the Energy Department on the list of federal agencies he wanted to eliminate.

The Energy Department is responsible for the US Nuclear Arsenal and crumbling Nuclear Power Plants.

Rick Perry's predecessors were Nuclear Physicists, one a Nobel Prize Winner.




Pilgrim owner avoids citation for violation


After appeal, NRC rates generator maintenance failure as low safety significance.


After appeal, NRC rates generator maintenance failure as low safety significance.
PLYMOUTH — The owners of Pilgrim Nuclear Power Station have argued their way out of an initial finding that the plant should be cited by federal regulators with a more serious violation for a leaky valve on a gearbox that put one of two emergency generators out of service in September.
Entergy Corp., the plant’s owner, presented the Nuclear Regulatory Commission with the results of a 24-hour endurance test it has since conducted on the gearbox with the valve leak, simulating the conditions and low oil level that existed at the time.
Even with the reduced oil, the gearbox would have fulfilled its safety function and not affected the generator’s performance for the required 24 hours, based on the test.
In a letter to Entergy, the commission said the violation would be finalized as “of very low safety significance” and categorized as a “non-cited violation,” based on results of the simulation and on Entergy’s actions, which included “restoring compliance within a reasonable time” and entering the issue in the plant’s corrective action plan.
The generator maintenance failure was included in the commission’s special inspection report issued in May that identified 11 violations, most of which were assigned a low-risk rating. At the time federal regulators were still considering the level of seriousness they would assign to the generator issue.
The valve in question had not been maintained since 2000, when operators replaced a gearbox on the diesel generator with a newer model that was equipped with an oil relief valve not on the earlier model.
Since the difference in the newer model was never noted, the valve went without maintenance.
In September 2016, workers spotted the oil on the floor and found the level in the gearbox was below the recommended minimum.
The commission’s letter to Entergy said there would be no penalty for failure to maintain the part, since the work crew in 2000 made the error by not pointing out the addition of the valve.
One nuclear industry expert expressed surprise that Entergy had gone to such lengths to avoid getting a more serious violation on its record, since it is currently categorized by federal regulators as Column 4, one step above mandatory shutdown and one of the three worst-performing plants in the country. All three of those plants are owned by Entergy.
David Lochbaum, director of the nuclear safety program for the Union of Concerned Scientists, said federal regulators made it clear after a three-week inspection of Pilgrim last winter that the plant would remain in Column 4.
Lochbaum said he wondered why Entergy would spend the money to do a simulation when the company has a long list of needed repairs included in the Recovery Plan it recently submitted for the 45-year-old plant.
“Would a smart, capable company have spent lots of money answering a moot question or would it have spent that money on some of the fixes listed in the Recovery Plan?” asked Lochbaum.
He then called it an unfair question. “A smart, capable company would not have three reactors in Column 4,” he said.
Entergy spokesman Patrick O’Brien would not discuss the cost of the simulation, calling it business-sensitive.
“Generally, Entergy will always spend what is required to ensure the safe, secure and reliable operation of Pilgrim, as well as to demonstrate that the plant is run safely,” O’Brien wrote in an email. “We appreciated the opportunity to present additional information on the emergency diesel generator gearbox matter to the NRC. The condition surrounding this issue was immediately addressed when discovered in September 2016. We remain focused on our commitment to provide safe and reliable electricity through May 31, 2019.”
Pilgrim is scheduled to be permanently shut down on that date.
http://www.capecodtimes.com/news/20170809/pilgrim-owner-avoids-citation-for-violation










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