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Virginia Earthquake Brings Attention To North Anna Nuclear Power Plant
Mediaite ^ | 08/22/11 | Colby Hall

Posted on 08/23/2011 11:39:17 AM PDT by freespirited

A 5.9 magnitude earthquake centered just northwest of Richmond, Va., shook much of Washington, D.C., and was felt throughout the Eastern seaboard and iron belt region of the United States. In the wake of the much more powerful Japanese earthquake of earlier this year, and its effect on the nearby Fukushima nuclear plant, this is certain to bring attention to the Virginian nuclear plant that may have been effected as well.

While there are no reports yet on the integrity of the local plant, reports of the epicenter being based in Mineral, Virgina suggest that the North Anna nuclear plant is located just a short 10 miles away.

The North Anna plant was built in the late 1970s and the two reactors went online in 1978 and 1980. According to not always reliable Wikipedia entry, the plant is located in a relatively rural area:

"The Nuclear Regulatory Commission defines two emergency planning zones around nuclear power plants: a plume exposure pathway zone with a radius of 10 miles (16 km), concerned primarily with exposure to, and inhalation of, airborne radioactive contamination, and an ingestion pathway zone of about 50 miles (80 km), concerned primarily with ingestion of food and liquid contaminated by radioactivity.[2]

The 2010 U.S. population within 10 miles (16 km) of North Anna was 21,396, an increase of 15.7 percent in a decade, according to an analysis of U.S. Census data for msnbc.com. The 2010 U.S. population within 50 miles (80 km) was 1,912,015, an increase of 22.6 percent since 2000. Cities within 50 miles include Richmond (40 miles to city center).[3]"

Expect to hear a lot more about North Anna and the U.S. nuclear power industry as a hot-button topic in the coming days and weeks.


TOPICS: News/Current Events; US: Virginia
KEYWORDS: earthquake; energy; northanna; nuclearplant; nuclearpower; powerplant
Still looking for more info. Like to think the nuke was built to withstand something of this magnitude.
1 posted on 08/23/2011 11:39:21 AM PDT by freespirited
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To: freespirited

Just reported on FOX that the two reactors have been taken offline ... this is SOP.


2 posted on 08/23/2011 11:42:59 AM PDT by freespirited (Stupid people are ruining America. --Herman Cain)
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To: freespirited

Epicenter was within 2 miles of the plant. I’m sure they SCRAMed


3 posted on 08/23/2011 11:44:39 AM PDT by jboot
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To: jboot

do you know where the term scram originated?


4 posted on 08/23/2011 11:46:36 AM PDT by brivette
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To: freespirited

Much more than likely, they took themselves offline. The reactor safety systems include redundant seismic monitors to automatically trip the reactor upon sensing abnormal ground acceleration.


5 posted on 08/23/2011 11:47:03 AM PDT by JEH_Boston (Never give up.)
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To: JEH_Boston

Very reassuring, thank you.


6 posted on 08/23/2011 11:48:43 AM PDT by freespirited (Stupid people are ruining America. --Herman Cain)
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To: freespirited

What crashed the reactors in Japan wasn’t the earthquake, it was the tsunami. Tsunami in Virginia very unlikely. Nothing to worry about here, but anti-nukes will make what they can of it.


7 posted on 08/23/2011 11:51:45 AM PDT by Argus
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To: freespirited

I wonder about Hope Creek and Salem 1 and Salem 2 in south Jersey; haven’t seen anything on them yet.


8 posted on 08/23/2011 11:52:54 AM PDT by PieterCasparzen (We need to fix things ourselves)
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To: Argus

Yeah. This article went on-line almost as fast as the nukes went off-line.


9 posted on 08/23/2011 11:55:58 AM PDT by Starstruck
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To: brivette

It is said to come from “Safety Control Rod Axe Man” back before automatic control systems... ...if you wish to see the rest of the story see:
http://www.nrc.gov/reading-rm/basic-ref/glossary/scram.html


10 posted on 08/23/2011 11:57:33 AM PDT by JEH_Boston (Never give up.)
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To: freespirited

This earthquake is going to be politicized like nothing you’ve ever seen.


11 posted on 08/23/2011 11:58:19 AM PDT by Steely Tom (Obama goes on long after the thrill of Obama is gone)
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To: freespirited

It’s a good thing Obama is on vacation or he would probably shut down all nuclear plants on the east coast. Where’s Biden, Obama didn’t leave the keys with him did he?


12 posted on 08/23/2011 11:59:30 AM PDT by Harley (Will Rogers never met Harry Reid.)
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To: freespirited

It’s a good thing Obama is on vacation or he would probably shut down all nuclear plants on the east coast. Where’s Biden, Obama didn’t leave the keys with him did he?


13 posted on 08/23/2011 12:00:02 PM PDT by Harley (Will Rogers never met Harry Reid.)
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To: JEH_Boston

thanks, thought it was sam crane ax man.


14 posted on 08/23/2011 12:01:10 PM PDT by brivette
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To: freespirited

Based on Richter scale, the Japan earthquake (approx 8.8) was approx 1000x stronger than the Virginia quake (5.9).


15 posted on 08/23/2011 12:03:28 PM PDT by WL-law
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To: brivette
Try here

http://www.ornl.gov/info/reporter/no19/scram.htm

16 posted on 08/23/2011 12:03:46 PM PDT by Ratman83
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To: freespirited
My son's Scout Troop spent the weekend at the North Anna Nuclear Facility, earning a merit badge. It is definitely in a rual setting. Originally had plans for four reactors, but after Three-Mile Island, they paniced and canceled the two unbuilt ones and even pulled out the foundations at a tremendious cost. Usual environmental wacko over-reaction.

Nice facility with outstanding professional staff. I am sure the Obama Administration is making up plans to shut the facility down or sell it to the Chinese.

17 posted on 08/23/2011 12:06:07 PM PDT by Redleg Duke ("Madison, Wisconsin is 30 square miles surrounded by reality.", L. S. Dryfus)
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To: brivette
Follow-up trivia for double-or-nothing:

Who was the first SCRAM (on CP-1)?

18 posted on 08/23/2011 12:09:38 PM PDT by chimera
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To: Steely Tom

Yes I’m sure it will and BUSH will no doubt get the blame for ALL of it!


19 posted on 08/23/2011 12:20:49 PM PDT by Rca2000 ( The Obama regime.....and all that goes with it .."All part of the "big plan"......)
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To: Steely Tom

Yes I’m sure it will and BUSH will no doubt get the blame for ALL of it!


20 posted on 08/23/2011 12:20:59 PM PDT by Rca2000 ( The Obama regime.....and all that goes with it .."All part of the "big plan"......)
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To: Redleg Duke
Nice facility with outstanding professional staff. I am sure the Obama Administration is making up plans to shut the facility down or sell it to the Chinese.

If they shut it down, there goes power to the federal bureaucracy in Northern Virginia. Their beloved solar panels are no replacement.

21 posted on 08/23/2011 12:29:58 PM PDT by freespirited (Stupid people are ruining America. --Herman Cain)
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To: Argus
What crashed the reactors in Japan wasn’t the earthquake, it was the tsunami.

Yes, in Japan the Tsunami took out the backup generators and made access to the plant very difficult. However, they have been discovering that a lot of damage was done to the plant via the earthquake alone. This quake was about 1,000 times weaker then the Japan quake, but these nuke plants apparently were very close to epicenter.

22 posted on 08/23/2011 1:07:36 PM PDT by justa-hairyape
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To: justa-hairyape

Just had a thought, what if these plants are still on backup generators when the Hurricane hits ?


23 posted on 08/23/2011 1:08:45 PM PDT by justa-hairyape
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To: freespirited
Just found the following on a Google search. From a progressive blog probably so take with a grain of salt.

An earthquake measuring 5.9 on the Richter scale just occurred less than a hour ago. It's epicenter was in Mineral, VA—approximately 10 miles from two nuclear power reactors at the North Anna site. According to a representative of Dominion Power, the two reactors were designed to withstand a 5.9-6.1 quake. The Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) ranked the North Anna Reactors as being 7th in the nation in terms of earthquake risks.

North Anna Nuclear Reactors Designed to Withstand 5.9 - 6.1 Magnitude Earthquake

24 posted on 08/23/2011 1:16:07 PM PDT by justa-hairyape
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To: freespirited

glad to see this thread... (let’s hope and pray there isn’t a bigger one coming to the area)


25 posted on 08/23/2011 3:24:42 PM PDT by stlnative
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To: justa-hairyape

Thanks for that. Ordinarily I would ignore the far lefty Marxists of the Institute for Policy Studies. But the paragraph you quote sounds accurate. (Did a fair amount of reading this afternoon.)

The statement that the nukes “lost power” probably is not. The Washington Post, as well as FReepers, say that safety systems kicked in and turned them off. I guess the left has to throw in at one false alarm per post.


26 posted on 08/23/2011 5:27:03 PM PDT by freespirited (Stupid people are ruining America. --Herman Cain)
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To: freespirited
Well that would be good news if they did not lose external power, but the company running the plants has stated they did lose external power. Here is an excerpt from the Dominion News release.

Both reactors have been shut down. The emergency diesel generators started as off-site power from the electric grid was lost. No release of radioactive material has occurred beyond those minor releases associated with normal station operations.

Dominion News

27 posted on 08/23/2011 5:36:25 PM PDT by justa-hairyape
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