NRC staff: Reassess Earthquake Risk at Nuke Plants
Staff at the Nuclear Regulatory Commission say the agency should immediately require operators to evaluate whether nuclear plants can withstand earthquakes and floods after events in Japan and Virginia.
A staff report made public Monday identifies seven regulatory actions the NRC should take "without delay" as it responds to the March 11 earthquake and tsunami that crippled a nuclear plant in Japan. The report also says the NRC should demand that the nation's 104 nuclear reactors have at least eight hours of battery power available in case of a prolonged power blackout. That's twice as long as currently required at many plants.
Last month a 5.8-magnitude earthquake caused the ground to shake much more than a Virginia nuclear plant was designed to withstand.
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