A story that is not yet being reported on by the local media here in Northampton, and which was reported first by the Rutland Herald on August 22nd, in VT., is this story I picked up on tonight while browsing iBrattelboro.com. On August 22nd, a cooling tower at Vermont Yankee collapsed, causing the plant to immediately power down to below 50% capacity. The collapse and subsequent damage was downplayed by officials when it happened, explaining that none of the water released in the accident came into contact with radioactive waste, and entered straight from the Connecticut River where it travels through these pipes on its way to cooling the plant. Rob Williams, spokesman for plant owner Entergy Nuclear, said the spilling of the water poses no threat to the public. So there you have it. Northamptonist readers can rest easy tonight after being calmly reassured by the spokesman of Entergy Nuclear.
-More reports and photos below: (Photos from Vermont Public Interest Group.)
Nuclear plant damage is worse than reported [Burlington Free Press]
NRC inspectors on site of tower collapse [WCAX-TV]
Photos show damage of Vermont Yankee cooling system [Burlington Free Press]
Congressional delegation calls investigation into Yankee mishap [Boston.com]
NRC: Yankee trouble a mystery [Rutland Herald]
[UPDATE] The Montpelier Times Argus has a very informative report on the collapse, with information on what Entergy Nuclear knew about the potential for damage, and when they knew it.
This AP article a day before the collapse reports on the discovery of "sagging and deformations in the wood structure". "Neil Sheehan, a spokesman for the federal Nuclear Regulatory Commission's regional office for the Northeast, said the problems did not raise a safety concern at the plant."
LABELS: nuclear power VT Yankee Power
"Not eating chard. That's what all those weirdos eat at their stupid picnics on the Hungry Ghost lawn." -Nina