Strong, Safe, Secure
Fears can be calmed with intelligent conversation that comes from knowing the facts. We are not afraid of the facts; we embrace them. From Three Mile Island to Japan, we are an industry that adopts new knowledge and improvements keeping our industry strong, secure and, above all, safe.
All U.S. nuclear plants undergo frequent training and drills to ensure safety protocols and emergency plans.
- Every nuclear power plant has multiple back-up safety systems, including an automatic safe shutdown mechanism, and new plants have more automatic safety systems.
- The U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission requires all nuclear plants to be able to withstand the most severe natural phenomena historically reported for each plant’s geographic area based on tectonic and geological fault line locations and proximity to oceans.
- To prepare for any kind of emergency—such as loss of offsite power, security threats and hurricane-force winds—nuclear plants drill on implementation of emergency procedures.
- Emergency response plans have broad industry involvement, including at least 200 employees at each nuclear power plant.
- All U.S. nuclear energy plants have Severe Accident Management Guidelines. The guidelines prescribe actions beyond normal emergency operating procedures and address severe challenges to the reactor core of the kind seen in Japan. Operators are regularly drilled and evaluated on these procedures.
The US nuclear energy fleet is the gold standard in safety practices worldwide.
No other industry has a history or culture of safety like nuclear to incorporate rigor, improve systems and undergo the stringent regulatory review than that of the U.S. fleet.
As a result of extremely rigorous reviews and enhancements since 9/11, America’s nuclear energy industry is even better protected and well prepared to prevent, respond and mitigate extreme scenarios beyond regulatory requirements.
Since 2001 (post-9/11), the U.S. electric industry has taken significant steps to enhance our ability to maintain safety during the most severe scenarios. The objective of these assessments was to test scenarios that are beyond NRC requirements to identify extraordinary, additional measures that assure that plants can mitigate severe events. All of the 104 sites in America’s nuclear fleet have undergone extremely comprehensive reviews by site-specific teams that include the Nuclear Regulatory Commission, Department of Homeland Security, Department of Energy, and Federal Bureau of Investigation.
All U.S. nuclear power plants are taking actions NOW at each of their sites to verify each company’s capability to maintain safety even in the face of severe adverse events, including the loss of significant operational and safety systems due to natural events, fires, aircraft impact and explosions. The industry is verifying that the capability to withstand a total loss of electric power to a nuclear power plant will function even after extreme events. We also will verify our capability to withstand flooding and the impact of floods on systems inside and outside the plant.