Safety Critical Cables, Wires at Nuclear Plants Are At Risk of Failure due to Underwater Submersion or High Humidity
The Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC) has petitioned the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) urging an upgrade to regulations on testing and qualification of safety significant electrical cabling at nuclear power plants. Some safety critical cables, with a theoretical life of 10,000 years when kept dry, could fail within just hundreds of hours after underwater submersion or exposure to high humidity. NRDC issued a press release on its petition.
The Fort Calhoun nuclear power plant near Omaha, Nebraska has remained shutdown since April 2011, due to historic floods on the Missouri River which submerged much of the facility (see photo, left) -- including countless miles of safety significant electrical cabling -- underwater for weeks. The integrity of those cables is now highly suspect.