NRC inspection of fuel cycle facilties

10 October 2011

The Nuclear Regulatory Commission has directed inspections of major US fuel cycle facilities to verify that they are adequately prepared to cope with the consequences of natural phenomena such as earthquakes and floods.

The NRC said that inspectors will evaluate the adequacy of emergency strategies designed to prevent and/or mitigate the consequences of natural events that exceed the facilities' licensing basis.

Inspections will be tailored to the individual facilities, but at a minimum they will evaluate seismic hazards, external flooding hazards, internal flooding hazards, wind and tornadoes, extended loss of AC or emergency power, and fire impacts.

The inspections will be conducted at all commercial uranium enrichment plants, nuclear fuel fabrication plants, and uranium conversion facilities currently operating in the United States. They must be completed by 30 September 2012.

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