Progress Energy Florida has notified the Nuclear Regulatory Commission and the Florida Public Service Commission that final retensioning of tendons within the Crystal River Nuclear Plant reactor building has been temporarily suspended while engineers investigate information from monitoring equipment at the repair site. The suspension will delay the planned April restart of the plant.

There are indications of additional delamination (or separation) resulting from the repair work, Progress Energy said. Engineers are evaluating the situation and will conduct a thorough assessment of repair options and the impact to the plant’s restart plans. The plant has been shut down since September of 2009 and there continues to be no threat to public health and safety.

“Our engineers will thoroughly evaluate all potential repair options. This has been a first-of-a-kind repair and we will continue to move forward cautiously and deliberately,” said Vincent Dolan, president and chief executive officer of Progress Energy Florida. “Our first priority remains protecting public health and safety. The plant remains shut down and is in a safe condition.”

A portion of the building was damaged in late 2009 during the process of creating an opening in the structure to remove and replace the steam generators inside. The unit was already shut down for refueling and maintenance at the time the damage was found. The damage was delamination (or separation) of a portion of the concrete at the periphery of the containment building.