NRC Release Regarding Harris Whistleblower
- March 22nd, 2006
U.S. NUCLEAR REGULATORY COMMISSION
Office of Public Affairs, Region II
61 Forsyth Street SW, Atlanta, GA 30303
NRC STAFF RESPONDS TO SECURITY CONCERNS AT HARRIS NUCLEAR POWER PLANT NEAR RALEIGH
The Nuclear Regulatory Commission staff has responded to the Union of Concerned Scientists (UCS) and the North Carolina Waste Awareness and Reduction Network (NC WARN) regarding security concerns the two groups raised at the Shearon Harris nuclear power plant near Raleigh last December.
In a March 22nd letter to UCS and NC WARN, Victor M. McCree, Director of the NRC’s Division of Reactor Safety in the agency’s Region II office in Atlanta, said the NRC, as a result of correspondence and conversations with the two groups, had identified 19 discrete issues requiring agency review and disposition. He said the NRC interviewed 91 contract security officers at the plant and reviewed numerous documents associated with 16 of the concerns. Of that 16, McCree said seven were substantiated but NRC inspections and evaluations revealed that the safety and security significance of the concerns was very low and did not represent “a degradation of plant security.” He said the NRC was unable to “establish the validity” of the other nine concerns.
Regarding the three remaining concerns, McCree said one concern related to claims of cheating on security certification tests is undergoing investigation by the NRC Office of Investigations. He said the other two concerns, one involving alleged reprisals against security officers who file injury reports and another involving alleged retaliation for raising security concerns, remain under NRC staff review.
The letter further states that “unless the NRC receives additional information that suggests our conclusions should be altered,” the NRC plans “no further action on the concerns.”
EDITORS: Interested parties may obtain a summary of the NRC’s review of security issues at the Harris plant at http://www.nrc.gov/reading-rm/doc-collections/for-the-record/2006/index.html. This summary can also be obtained via email or facsimile by calling the NRC Region II Public Affairs office at (404) 562-4417 or by email at OPA2@nrc.gov.