San Onofre Nuclear Generating Station Operators Assessing Leak and Shutdown of Reactor Unit
ROSEMEAD, Calif., Feb. 1, 2012 – Southern California Edison (SCE), operator of the San Onofre Nuclear Generating Station, continues to plan for the repair of the steam generator tube leak in Unit 3 following a precautionary shutdown Tuesday. Sensitive monitoring instruments at Unit 3 continue to show no change in radiation levels that would be detectable off-site.
Operators responded quickly yesterday to indications of a steam generator tube leak based on readings from highly sensitive instruments designed to detect this condition, and in time to take action to prevent any potential change in detectable radiation exposure outside the plant boundary. Operators safely shut the plant down and isolated the component that contained the leaking tube within four hours of detecting the indications.
Currently, operators are cooling down Unit 3 and reducing pressure in the plant, which is the method to stop the tube from leaking. They are meticulously following prescribed procedures written specifically for addressing a tube leak condition.
"There was no threat then, nor is there now any danger to the public or to plant workers," said Pete Dietrich, senior vice president and Chief Nuclear Officer for Southern California Edison. "Our operators performed exactly as they are trained to perform and took prompt action to ensure we did not create a situation involving any challenge to the health and safety of the public," Dietrich said.
Unit 2 is currently offline for a planned maintenance, refueling and technology upgrade outage. Service will not be affected; Southern California Edison has ample reserve power to meet customer needs.
About Southern California Edison
An Edison International (NYSE:EIX) company, Southern California Edison is one of the nation's largest electric utilities, serving a population of nearly 14 million via 4.9 million customer accounts in a 50,000-square-mile service area within Central, Coastal and Southern California.