Nuclear power plant endured excessive shaking during quake

The U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) said the magnitude-5.8 earthquake that hit near Dominion Energy’s (NYSE: D) 1,953 MWe North Anna nuclear power plant in Virginia caused twice as much ground shaking as the plant was designed to withstand, according to USA Today.

The plant endured jolts equal to 26 percent of the force of gravity from some of the higher frequency vibrations during the quake, an NRC spokesman was quoted as saying.  The earthquake also caused 25 of 27 metal casks, weighing up to 115 tons, to move as much as 4.5 inches at the plant.

The two Westinghouse three-loop pressurized water reactors have been shut down since the earthquake hit August 23, causing them to lose on-site power and shut down automatically. Backup diesel generators kept the cores cool until electricity was restored to the plant hours later. No damage was reported.

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