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Last updated 7:34PM ET
August 21, 2018
WFCR Local News
WFCR Local News
Vermont Yankee says Cooling Tower Collapse has Nothing to do with Future Licensing
(wfcr) - The company that owns the Vermont Yankee nuclear power plant says the collapse of a portion of a cooling tower should not be part of the discussion on whether to extend the plant's operating license for 20 years. In a letter to the Nuclear Regulatory Commission, Entergy Nuclear says the cooling towers are not strictly considered "safety" equipment and so are outside the scope of federal review. The NRC had asked Entergy for any details of age-related degradation of the tower components following the collapse in late august. Rob Williams, a spokesman for Entergy, says the collapse was due to an "iron salt attack"-- in which the iron-based hardware on the tower causes deterioration of the lumber that makes up its frame. Williams says they also found that inspection of the tower should have been more thorough. But, Williams says, only two of Vermont Yankee's eleven cooling towers are related to the plant's emergency cooling system-- and those are built differently from the others. He says concerns about the reliability of the non-safety-related cooling towers would fall under the jurisdiction of the state of Vermont, not the federal NRC. © Copyright 2018, wfcr