Dominion Shuts Down Nuclear Power Plant Following Earthquake
Dominion has shut down its North Anna Power Station after a 5.9 magnitude earthquake hit Virginia Tuesday afternoon.
Located in Louisa County, Virginia, the North Anna nuclear facility was just 20 miles outside of the earthquake's epicenter. Immediately following the earthquake, the nuclear power plant lost power as result of the area's electric grid being displaced. Emergency diesel generators situated at the facility are currently generating electricity for the North Anna power plant.
Both Dominion as well as the Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) are reporting that no radioactive material has been released as a result of the earthquake. Early investigations report that no significant damage has occurred. Both the NRC and Dominion staff are evaluating the power plant.
After the earthquake, the power station declared an "Alert," which, according to the NRC, is the second lowest of the four emergency classifications.
12 other nuclear power plants located across six states (Pennsylvania, New Jersey, Virginia, North Carolina, Maryland, and Michigan) have reported "Unusual Events" after the afternoon earthquake. Each of these nuclear facilities are continuing to operate while plant personnel examine their sites.
Nuclear safety has become of even greater concern following the nuclear disaster that ensued at Japan's Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant after a major earthquake in March.
Image credit: Paul J. Everett via Flickr
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