“Leak” at Three Mile Island Nuclear Plant: CNN and ABC News Get it Wrong

  This Week in Nuclear Episode 80 – MP3 File If you were watching CNN or ABC News last night and this morning you may have believed a major accident was underway at the Three Mile Island nuclear plant. Both news sources reported there had been a “radiation leak” at the plant and more than 100 workers were contaminated.   Both CNN and ABC News were blatantly wrong; there was not a “radiation leak” from the plant. What happened was a minor spread of radioactive dust and particles during maintenance activities inside the reactor building. Some workers in the vicinity got material on their clothes and skin that had to be washed off. The material was easily contained and there was no leak from the plant into the environment. I first learned about this from April Schilpp, who I follow on Twitter. April is a communications specialist in Lancaster, PA.  In this podcast April and I discuss what happened, how the social media helped get the word out, and how the companies and other stakeholders could have used social media to keep the mainstream news sources...

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OSHA: Working in a Nuclear Plant is Safer than Office Work

An interesting article at ReliablePlant.com about safety improvements at US commercial nuclear plants after the TMI partial core meltdown 30 years ago.  Yes, the title of this article is true, but there is more: When it comes to safety, added layers of protection only enhance nuclear energy’s capability to provide clean, efficient power, with performance levels increasing steadily over time. In 2008, U.S. nuclear plants surpassed coal, natural gas, oil and all other fuels that make electricity by operating to more than 90 percent of their total rated capacity. Nuclear plants also generated approximately 805.7 billion kilowatt-hours of electricity last year, enough to serve the total year’s electricity needs of one-fifth the U.S. population. A great example is Arkansas Nuclear One where workers have gone a mind-boggling nine years and 23 million man-hours without a loss work time accident. Nearly 23 million hours worked over a span of almost nine years without a lost time accident is a remarkable feat for any industrial facility. That is exactly what Arkansas and Nuclear One employees have accomplished and the meter is still running. The Occupational Safety and Health Administration recently approved ANO’s continued participation at the voluntary projection program star level, the program’s highest rating, a status ANO has maintained for 12 years and a nuclear industry record. I get so sick of anti-nuclear claims that nuclear plants are...

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