29 cases of trouble at nuclear plants reported in FY 1999--45% increase over previous year

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29 cases of trouble at nuclear plants reported in FY 1999

Source: Kyodo News Service/Associated Press Publication date: Apr 05, 2000

TOKYO, April 5 (Kyodo) -- A total of 29 cases of trouble at 51 nuclear power plants nationwide were reported in fiscal 1999, according to a report by the Resources and Energy Agency released Wednesday. The number of cases was nine more than in the previous year, but the agency said it was not unusual as there had been an earlier year in which some 50 cases of trouble were reported.

The 29 cases included two cases of automatic suspension of operations and seven cases of manual suspension of operations, the report said.

It said one case was categorized as level 1.

One case, in which cooling-water leaked at a nuclear reactor in Fukui Prefecture last July, was evaluated as level 1 on the international scale for such incidents at nuclear power plants. The scale consists of nine levels -- from 0 to 7, plus a preliminary "below evaluation" level.

The No. 2 reactor of the Fukui nuclear power plant was shut down manually on July 12 after a massive loss of cooling water caused the temperature to rise in a containment building. The plant, which faces the Sea of Japan in Tsuruga, is operated by Japan Atomic Power Co.

Of the other 28 cases, 23 were categorized as level 0 and five as "out of evaluation." No environmental pollution by nuclear substances was reported in any of the cases, the agency said.

The report did not cover trouble at nuclear facilities other than power plants, and therefore did not include the radiation leakage at Tokaimura in Ibaraki Prefecture in September last year -- Japan's worst nuclear accident -- which occurred at a uranium processing plant.

Publication date: Apr 05, 2000 ) 2000, NewsReal, Inc.


-- Carl Jenkins (Somewherepress@aol.com), April 05, 2000


One reason more cases might have been reported is because people were looking more, as a result of Y2K preparations, or of strengthened QC or preventative maintenance. I'm not saying that IS the reason, I'm just saying that it's appropriate to suspend judgement on the meaning of the increase until more facts and perspectives are available and understood.

Thanks for posting this report, Carl.

-- Jan Nickerson (JaNickrson@aol.com), April 05, 2000.

What would we do without you, Carl? You come up with such hidden gems.

-- Loner (loner@bigfoot.com), April 06, 2000.

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