Vogtle reactor vessel sitting unprotected at Savannah port

What happened to Plant Vogtle’s new reactor vessel after it was in a train wreck a week ago? It went back to Savannah port and sits there unprotected and unguarded.

Thomas Clements wrote for the Aiken Leader 14 January 2013, Vogtle AP1000 Nuclear Reactor Vessel Discovered Unprotected, Stranded in Savannah Port since December 15 Shipment Failure,

Tom Clements, Alliance for Nuclear Accountability

The reactor pressure vessel (RPV) for the chronically delayed Vogtle AP1000 reactor construction project near Waynesboro, Georgia sits stranded and seemingly unprotected in the port of Savannah. The special railroad car carrying the 300-ton vessel had unknown mechanical problems on December 15 on exiting the port. The NRC has said that the vessel only got one-quarter mile before a sound was heard and the car stopped. Plans by Westinghouse and Southern Company to move the vessel are unknown. It is also unknown if the railroad car can be repaired and used or if the railroad company which owns the line is concerned that the rail car might break down again on its line in an in accessible place. Meanwhile, the apparently unguarded reactor might be subject to sabotage and sits in apparent violation of NRC quality assurance and “administrative control” regulations.

The article includes links to several more pictures taken 13 January 2013 by Tom Clements of Alliance for Nuclear Accountability, such as this one with the bridge clearly visible:

The special “Schnabel” car — its many small wheels designed to spread out the weight can be seen in the photos linked below—is sitting just north of downtown Savannah, hundreds of feet from both the Savannah River ship channel and the Talmadge Memorial Bridge which spans the river. The area on the rail line where the rail car is believed to have failed is just outside the port area behind a branch office of the Savannah police department and between SE Lathrop Avenue and the U.S. Highway 17 approach to the bridge, which looms to the side of the stranded reactor.

The Georgia legislature is in session. You can contact your legislator or the PSC today about toppling Southern Company’s three-legged nuclear regulatory-capture stool and fixing that 1973 Territoriality Law so we can get on with solar and wind in Georgia, for jobs and energy independence, and oh by the way clean air and plenty of clean water.