Prairie Island nuclear power plant declares Unusual Event at Unit 2 reactor

Source: U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission 

The Prairie Island nuclear power plant is owned and operated by Northern States Power Co., a unit of Xcel Energy  and is located in Welch, Minn. The U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission is monitoring an Unusual Event – the lowest emergency level in the NRC’s emergency classification system - declared at 6:24 a.m. CT at the Prairie Island Nuclear Generation Plant Unit 2. The declaration was made due to an indication of an increase in reactor coolant system leakage.

The two-unit plant is owned and operated by Northern States Power Co., a unit of Xcel Energy (NYSE:XEL), and is located in Welch, Minn., approximately 26 miles southeast of Minneapolis

The NRC has activated its Incident Response Center in the Region III office in Lisle, Ill. Two NRC resident inspectors have responded to the site and are following the event in consultation with Region III staff. 

Unit 2 is shut down for a refueling outage. The workers at the plant identified an apparent decrease in reactor vessel coolant level and are taking actions to further understand the situation. The plant is maintaining the appropriate level of water in the reactor. The NRC is monitoring the plant’s efforts. 

There was no radiation released or impact to plant workers or the public. Unit 1 is at full power. 

Once the event is over, the NRC will fully investigate the cause of contributing factors to the incident.



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