ST. FRANCISVILLE — The Nuclear Regulatory Commission plans a special inspection at Entergy’s River Bend nuclear station in St. Francisville, after an unplanned reactor shutdown on Jan. 9.
The commission made its announcement Monday.
The NRC said the plant was operating at full power when a lightning strike caused a momentary surge in the plant’s offsite power supply, triggering a shutdown. The commission said operators took appropriate actions to place the plant in a safe shutdown condition. The following day, operational errors led to a one-hour loss of shutdown cooling.
The shutdown cooling system is designed to remove heat from the reactor after it is shut down, so it will not undergo a meltdown because of excess heat.
“The purpose of this special inspection is to better understand the circumstances surrounding the loss of shutdown cooling, determine if operator response was appropriate, and review the licensee’s corrective actions to ensure that the cause of the event, including associated equipment problems and any contributing operator actions have been effectively addressed,” NRC Region IV Administrator Marc Dapas said in a release.
The report will be made public within 45 days of the end of the inspection.