Nuclear Regulatory Commission Proposes Fine Against TVA


KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — The Nuclear Regulatory Commission is proposing a $70,000 fine against the Tennessee Valley Authority for violations related to one of its East Tennessee nuclear plants.

According to a NRC news release on Wednesday, the violations have to do with the commercial grade dedication program during the construction of Watts Bar Nuclear Plant Unit 2, about 60 miles southwest of Knoxville.

The NRC requires certain components in a nuclear plant to meet strict nuclear quality assurance standards. Commercial grade dedication is a process that provides reasonable assurance that components purchased from a commercial supplier are equivalent to nuclear grade items.

NRC inspectors found a breakdown in the program resulting in construction of unknown quality, a failure to report that breakdown and a failure to identify that issue as a significant condition affecting quality.

At a conference last month, TVA outlined a number of corrective actions including a review of all commercial grade dedication documents, additional staff training and creating a new position to oversee the process.

TVA spokeswoman Gail Rymer told The Associated Press that the agency "accepts and respects the enforcement decision issued by the NRC."

But she said "no issues have been identified as we've gone through the review process, and we will be completed with that review by the end of this month."

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