Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Mandatory evacuation around Fort Calhoun NPP as waters seriously threaten the reactor

The USA has decreed a mandatory evacuation of 10 miles (16 kilometers) around the Ft. Calhoun nuclear power plant in Nebraska, as Missouri has already flooded all around the building.

So far there seems not have yet been any accident but the waters keep growing and there is clear risk because even if the plant has been in cool shutdown since April, it still needs the appropriate conditions to keep the beast under control: all working properly and a continuous power supply.

The following video gives an idea of the reality of the threat as brief images of the flooded plant are shown:

I must say that, assuming it is true that no accident has occurred yet, I must commend the US reaction, specially comparing with the over-shy one at Japan, that is risking so many lives. On the other side, I hope this is not intended to prevent press from reporting and taking pictures of what is going on.

Unconfirmed rumors claim that Ft. Calhoun NPP is a huge spent fuel depot and that makes it more dangerous than Fukushima. It is in fact in the list of nuclear waste depots but it is unclear how much it hosts.

I could not yet figure out how big is the area affected by the mandatory evacuation but this is a map of how to evacuate the zone:

Source: Nebraska Emergency Management Agency.

From Google Maps I gather that the mandatory evacuation zone includes the towns of Blair, Ft. Calhoun, Kennard, Missouri Valley and Modale.

Update (Jun 30): 840 metric tons of spent fuel are effectively stored in Ft. Calhoun and Cooper NPPs (Midlands Voices).


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