Screwdriver identified as cause of halting nuclear power plant in S Korea

16:28, February 17, 2011      

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A screwdriver has been identified as the cause of trouble that halted the operation of a nuclear power plant in the southern part of South Korea, according to local reports on Thursday.

The nuclear power plant in Yeonggwang, about 288 kilometers south of Seoul, stopped at around 5:49 am on Feb. 4 as its cooling pump ceased operation. A 30-centimer-long screwdriver was detected in a motor inside the cooling pump and is assumed to have caused the trouble by producing an electronic shock after coming into contact with motor coils, according to Yonhap News Agency.

It is largely believed that the screwdriver was put inside the motor by accident during the manufacturing process. An unidentified nuclear power expert was quoted by Yonhap as saying that it is absolutely absurd to have detected a screwdriver in a nuclear power plant. He added that the system for maintenance must be reexamined from fundamentals in order to gain trust from local residents.

Indeed, concerns over safety issues are rising among local residents as the nuclear plant stopped its operation twice in 15 days.

Source: Xinhua


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