Lydd Airport Inquiry resumes: Dungeness as a Fukushima in the making?
(LAAG) begins its nuclear safety case with John Large, the first of four experts
engaged by LAAG to demonstrate that it is inherently unsafe for a regional airport
to be developed beside a nuclear power station complex.
accident since large aircraft, such as Boeing 737s, will be taking off and landing
close to the Dungeness site. Mr Large will outline the vulnerability of the Dungeness
nuclear power stations (Dungeness A and Dungeness B) to an aircraft crash and
reveal that the risk of serious radiological release remains on site well beyond
the decommissioning phase.
with nuclear accidents, will demonstrate that even though he believes the reinforced concrete vessel of each reactor at Dungeness B would
most likely withstand the aircraft crash, subsidiary equipment failures caused
by the crash could lead to a very significant radiological release, mirroring
the situation at Fukushima.
they were designed to do, but the complete loss of power and auxiliary service
water supply which occurred after the tsunami, triggered the radiological release.
Large will also demonstrate the failure to assess and include Dungeness A and
the nuclear rail head in the crash damage safety assessment. This is despite the
admission by the Nuclear Installations Inspectorate (NII) – now part of the Office
for Nuclear Regulation – that Dungeness A, despite ceasing power generation in
2006, is currently considered more dangerous that the operationally active Dungeness
B. His evidence will also reveal a failure to undertake a demographic siting
assessment required to take account of the additional population flows produced
by the airport
should be avoided. Just as Japan will be questioning the wisdom of locating nuclear
power station on a coastline exposed to tsunamis, the UK should not choose to
expand an airport next to a nuclear power station because it is inherently unsafe
and places the general public at risk. The nuclear regulator is looking at the
‘lessons to be learned’ from Fukushima which requires it to re-evaluate the way
in which it views this kind of accident where the probability may be low but where
the outcome is so extreme.
Nuclear power stations: Another safety exemption for aviation?
the force of an aircraft crash under stress tests being drafted by regulators.
The FT has reported that the
laid out in a proposal for the stress tests, the centrepiece of the EU’s plan
to ensure the safety of its 143 nuclear plants after Fukushima. Natural disasters
have to be taken account of.