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​Radioactive leak as fire strikes Scottish nuclear pla
Sat Nov 22, 2014 06:34

​Radioactive leak as fire strikes Scottish nuclear plant
Published time: November 21, 2014 13:45
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The nuclear fuel reprocessing plant at Dounreay in Scotland (Reuters)
The nuclear fuel reprocessing plant at Dounreay in Scotland (Reuters)

Accident, Blast, Ecology, Energy, Infrastructure, Nuclear, Regional development, Resources, UK

A fire at a Scottish nuclear power plant has caused the release of radioactive particles “via an unauthorized route.” Site officials insist the leak poses no threat to the public.

The fire at Dounreay Site Restoration Limited (DSRL) began at 01:30 GMT on October 7. Fire services at the plant were able to extinguish the blaze within 30 minutes.

Subsequent monitoring of the fire, reportedly caused by “procedural non-compliances and behavioral practices” by staff, showed that low levels of radioactive particles has been released into the atmosphere as a result of the incident.

A DSRL statement said the trace amounts of leaked tritium did not pose a health risk to local members of the public.

The blaze started in the Prototype Fast Reactor (PFR), which houses four tanks that contain residual sodium from the reactors operations. Up until the accident, over 1,500 tons of waste sodium had been destroyed safely.

The DSRL is currently in the process of being decommissioned, and ceased to function as a producer of energy in 1994.

Managing Director of DSRL Mark Rouse said the site had been issued with an improvement notice by regulators of the nuclear industry.

He said “our investigation identified unacceptable behaviors and practices that fell well short of our values and standards.”

A statement further claimed that “direct action has been taken to stabilize the situation and stop work in the tank farm area. It will not be re-started until the ONR are satisfied with DSRL’s improvements.”

READ MORE: UK wind farms outshine nuclear power output

The site has since dedicated a team to improve safety measures. They say they will “learn lessons” from this and other incidents and implement a wide-ranging strategy to ensure there are no further accidents.

Rouse said “it is important to take the time to ensure as many lessons are learned from this incident as possible.

“We are determined to improve our behaviors and compliance to ensure that we always meet the high standards expected on a nuclear site,” he added.

The radioactive tritium is naturally found in the Earth’s upper atmosphere, but can be produced artificially by nuclear explosions and civilian reactors.

DSRL has permission to release specified amounts of the chemical into the atmosphere.

The accident at DSRL occurred the same day as a fire aboard a ship transporting nuclear waste from Dounreay to Belgium.
by Taboola
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Edmund Cornu
Can't say that this power station fills me with confidence. Roll on the day when Scotland is powered 100 per cent by renewables. Not long now.
about 3 hours agoReply
east Germany
" to ensure there are no further accidents. '' what a joke
about 4 hours agoReply
Beryl Gillespie Simpson
Doesn't worry me at all.- worked there for 6 yrs and now live over the Pentland Firth across from it.
about 24 hours agoReply
Edmund Cornu
Pedraigin Eagle, Your avatar has vanished....rush to see your don't exist..
about 3 hours agoReply
east Germany
I heard the same from head of TEPCO at Fukushima LOL
about 4 hours agoReply
Padraigin Eagle
The Simpsons: It gets much weirder than this On my screen, you glow so well, Beryl Gillespie Simpson. Are you sure you're okay. Perhaps a touch of dementia setting in.
about 13 hours agoReply
I'll tell myself this when the sh@t goes down... so comforting i can all almost see the red nose of Rudolphe 》The radioactive tritium is naturally found in the Earth’s upper atmosphere, but can be produced artificially by nuclear explosions and civilian reactors.《
day ago 11:06Reply
"unauthorized"............these weasel words courtesy of the legal profession .
day ago 10:46Reply
Nothing to worry about here people, only green glowing humans with a few extra extremitys!
day ago 10:18Reply
kevin keane
Well the kelts (Scots) came from Russia I'm sure our brother's and sisters would be welcomed from the mother land

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