ADVERTISEMENT
2 /3 FREE ARTICLES LEFT THIS MONTH Remaining
Chemistry matters. Join us to get the news you need.

If you have an ACS member number, please enter it here so we can link this account to your membership. (optional)

ACS values your privacy. By submitting your information, you are gaining access to C&EN and subscribing to our weekly newsletter. We use the information you provide to make your reading experience better, and we will never sell your data to third party members.

ENJOY UNLIMITED ACCES TO C&EN

Safety

NAS Report Urges Nuclear Industry To Prepare For Natural Hazards

Safety: Learn from Fukushima Daiichi, the panel adjures the nuclear industry and NRC

by Andrea Widener
July 28, 2014 | APPEARED IN VOLUME 92, ISSUE 30

The nuclear industry and regulators need to seek information about and prepare for rare hazards such as the earthquake and tsunami that devastated Japan’s Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant in 2011, the National Academy of Sciences (NAS) says in a study released last week.

Rare happenings, both natural and human-caused, have brought about many of the world’s nuclear power plant accidents, including the Three Mile Island accident in Pennsylanvia, the Chernobyl disaster in Ukraine, and, most recently, the Fukushima Daiichi catastrophe, NAS says in the report.

“There is some new evidence that some of these events are not as rare as perhaps we thought,” says B. John Garrick, a nuclear consultant and member of the committee that wrote the report.

The nuclear industry and the Nuclear Regulatory Commission should expand their risk analyses to include impacts from major disasters that could damage critical safety features and affect several nuclear plants at once, the report says. It recommends that U.S. nuclear plant owners train plant employees to deal with these events as they unfold, rather than just training them to respond to specific known hazards.

Many of the Fukushima Daiichi problems were created by failure of the plant’s power supply, which prevented employees and emergency responders from monitoring the state of the plant’s reactors. The report recommends improving backup power systems and designing ways to monitor reactor venting, heat buildup, and other changes during emergency situations. Maintaining communication is also critical, it says.

X

Article:

This article has been sent to the following recipient:

Leave A Comment

*Required to comment