The US Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) has announced plans to establish a dedicated organisation as the centre of all inspection activity for expected new nuclear power plants.

The Construction Inspection Program will be responsible for day-to-day onsite inspections and specialised inspection resources supporting the agency’s oversight of new nuclear power plant construction across the entire country.

“This approach will make sure inspection methods are consistent across the country, and allow us to quickly incorporate lessons learned into the entire programme,” said NRC chairman Nils Diaz adding: “Thorough inspections will help ensure any new nuclear power plants are built to meet our requirements for protecting the public’s health and safety.”

The NRC is expecting several applications for new nuclear power plants in late 2007 and early 2008, with construction activities possible after significant agency review.

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