UPDATE - Test Shuts Down Clinton Power Plant

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Test shuts down Clinton power plant Source: The Pantagraph Bloomington, IL Publication date: 2000-05-18

CLINTON - After running continuously for almost a year, a malfunction caused the Clinton Power Station to shut down Wednesday morning. However, spokesmen for area power companies said the Clinton shutdown would have no impact on electricity supplies for Central Illinois customers.

The nuclear power plant, which was operating at 100 percent capacity, shut down automatically at 10:14 a.m. Wednesday, said AmerGen spokesman Bruce Paulsen.

Plant workers were performing a routine post-maintenance test on an electrical component. A device was used to isolate the equipment being tested and prevent any signal from going into the plant's operating system.

But something went wrong and the signal went on to the rest of the plant's main system, Paulsen said.

There were no injuries or evacuations, and there was no danger to the public, Paulsen said.

Paulsen, who noted that restarting a nuclear power plant is complex and time consuming, said he could not estimate when the plant will be up and running, but it definitely would not be today.

"We get our power from many sources beyond Clinton," said Molly Hall, a spokeswoman with Illinois Power Co. "Clinton is just a piece of a giant puzzle." Illinois Power has ample reserves, she added.

"It is really a nonevent for us," said Neal Johnson, a spokesman for Central Illinois Light Co.

He said CILCO currently is not buying power from AmerGen Corp., which owns the plant, but even if it was, electricity can be purchased elsewhere because utilities are "all interconnected in a power grid."

The Nuclear Regulatory Commission and the Illinois Department of Nuclear Energy were notified. The plant had been operating continuously since May 27, 1999, the longest time of continuous operation in the plant's history.



-- (Dee360Degree@aol.com), May 19, 2000


Malfunction Blamed in Shutdown of Illinois Nuclear Power Plant Source: Knight Ridder/Tribune Business News Publication date: 2000-05-18

May 18--CLINTON, Ill.--Malfunctioning equipment has been blamed for the shutdown of the Clinton nuclear plant on Wednesday. AmerGen Energy spokesman Bruce Paulsen said the power station was manually shut down at 10:14 a.m. when plant workers were performing a routine post-maintenance test on a piece of electrical equipment.

Paulsen said a device used to isolate the equipment being tested and to prevent signals from going into the plant's operating system malfunctioned, causing the shutdown.

It was the first shutdown of the plant since former owner Illinois Power restarted it on May 27, 1999. The plant has since been purchased by AmerGen Energy.

Paulsen said that the plant remained in stable condition today and that AmerGen had notified state and federal nuclear regulatory authorities about the incident.

"We don't know when the plant is going to be restarted," Paulsen said. "We need to first figure out exactly what happened and why it happened."


To see more of The News-Gazette, or to subscribe to the newspaper, go to http://www.news-gazette.com

(c) 2000, The News-Gazette, Champaign-Urbana, Ill. Distributed by Knight Ridder/Tribune Business News. PE, BGY,

Publication date: 2000-05-18 ) 2000, YellowBrix, Inc. http://realcities.yellowbrix.com/pages/realcities/Story.nsp? story_id=10584130&site=charlotte&ID=realcities&scategory=Computers% 3AY2K

-- (Dee360Degree@aol.com), May 19, 2000.

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