Nuclear power plant accidents

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SOURCE: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nuclear_and_radiation_accidents_and_incidents

One of the worst nuclear accidents to date was the Chernobyl disaster which occurred in 1986 in Ukraine. The accident killed 31 people directly and damaged approximately $7 billion of property. A study published in 2005 estimates that there will eventually be up to 4,000 additional cancer deaths related to the accident among those exposed to significant radiation levels.[19] Radioactive fallout from the accident was concentrated in areas of Belarus, Ukraine and Russia. Other studies have estimated as many as over a million eventual cancer deaths from Chernobyl.[20] [21] Estimates of eventual deaths from cancer are highly contested. Industry, UN and DOE agencies claim low numbers of legally provable cancer deaths will be traceable to the disaster. The UN, DOE and industry agencies all use the limits of the epidemiological resolvable deaths as the cutoff below which they cannot be legally proven to come from the disaster. Independent studies statistically calculate fatal cancers from dose and population, even though the number of additional cancers will be below the epidemiological threshold of measurement of around 1%. These are two very different concepts and lead to the huge variations in estimates. Both are reasonable projections with different meanings. Approximately 350,000 people were forcibly resettled away from these areas soon after the accident.[19]

Benjamin K. Sovacool has reported that worldwide there have been 99 accidents at nuclear power plants from 1952 to 2009 (defined as incidents that either resulted in the loss of human life or more than US$50,000 of property damage, the amount the US federal government uses to define major energy accidents that must be reported), totaling US$20.5 billion in property damages.[8] Fifty-seven accidents have occurred since the Chernobyl disaster, and almost two-thirds (56 out of 99) of all nuclear-related accidents have occurred in the US. There have been comparatively few fatalities associated with nuclear power plant accidents.[8]

Nuclear power plant accidents and incidents
with multiple fatalities and/or more than US$100 million in property damage, 1952-2011
[8][19][22]
DateLocation of accidentDescription of accident or incidentDeadCost
($US
millions
2006 )
INES
level
[23]
September 29, 1957Mayak, Kyshtym, RussiaThe Kyshtym disaster was a radiation contamination incident that occurred at Mayak, a Nuclear fuel reprocessing plant in the Soviet Union.6
July 26, 1957Simi Valley, California, United StatesPartial core meltdown at Santa Susana Field Laboratory’s Sodium Reactor Experiment.032
October 10, 1957Sellafield, Cumberland, United KingdomA fire at the British atomic bomb project destroyed the core and released an estimated 740 terabecquerels of iodine-131 into the environment. A rudimentary smoke filter constructed over the main outlet chimney successfully prevented a far worse radiation leak and ensured minimal damage.05
January 3, 1961Idaho Falls, Idaho, United StatesExplosion at SL-1 prototype at the National Reactor Testing Station. All 3 operators were killed when a control rod was removed too far.3224
October 5, 1966Frenchtown Charter Township, Michigan, United StatesPartial core meltdown of the Fermi 1 Reactor at the Enrico Fermi Nuclear Generating Station. No radiation leakage into the environment.0132[24]
January 21, 1969Lucens reactor, Vaud, SwitzerlandOn January 21, 1969, it suffered a loss-of-coolant accident, leading to a partial core meltdown and massive radioactive contamination of the cavern, which was then sealed.05
1975Sosnovyi Bor, Leningrad Oblast, RussiaThere was reportedly a partial nuclear meltdown in Leningrad nuclear power plant reactor unit 1.
December 7, 1975Greifswald, East GermanyElectrical error causes fire in the main trough that destroys control lines and five main coolant pumps04433
January 5, 1976Jaslovské Bohunice, CzechoslovakiaMalfunction during fuel replacement. Fuel rod ejected from reactor into the reactor hall by coolant (CO2).[25]24
February 22, 1977Jaslovské Bohunice, CzechoslovakiaSevere corrosion of reactor and release of radioactivity into the plant area, necessitating total decommission01,7004
March 28, 1979Three Mile Island, Pennsylvania, United StatesLoss of coolant and partial core meltdown due to operator errors. There is a small release of radioactive gases. See also Three Mile Island accident health effects.02,4005
September 15, 1984Athens, Alabama, United StatesSafety violations, operator error, and design problems force a six-year outage at Browns Ferry Unit 2.0110
March 9, 1985Athens, Alabama, United StatesInstrumentation systems malfunction during startup, which led to suspension of operations at all three Browns Ferry Units01,830
April 11, 1986Plymouth, Massachusetts, United StatesRecurring equipment problems force emergency shutdown of Boston Edison’s Pilgrim Nuclear Power Plant01,001
April 26, 1986Chernobyl disaster, Ukrainian SSROverheating, steam explosion, fire, and meltdown, necessitating the evacuation of 300,000 people from Chernobyl and dispersing radioactive material across Europe (see Effects of the Chernobyl disaster)30 direct, 19 not entirely related and 15 minors due to thyroid cancer, as of 2008.[3][26]6,7007
May 4, 1986Hamm-Uentrop, West GermanyExperimental THTR-300 reactor releases small amounts of fission products (0.1 GBq Co-60, Cs-137, Pa-233) to surrounding area0267
March 31, 1987Delta, Pennsylvania, United StatesPeach Bottom units 2 and 3 shutdown due to cooling malfunctions and unexplained equipment problems0400
December 19, 1987Lycoming, New York, United StatesMalfunctions force Niagara Mohawk Power Corporation to shut down Nine Mile Point Unit 10150
March 17, 1989Lusby, Maryland, United StatesInspections at Calvert Cliff Units 1 and 2 reveal cracks at pressurized heater sleeves, forcing extended shutdowns0120
March 1992Sosnovyi Bor, Leningrad Oblast, RussiaAn accident at the Sosnovy Bor nuclear plant leaked radioactive gases and iodine into the air through a ruptured fuel channel.
February 20, 1996Waterford, Connecticut, United StatesLeaking valve forces shutdown Millstone Nuclear Power Plant Units 1 and 2, multiple equipment failures found0254
September 2, 1996Crystal River, Florida, United StatesBalance-of-plant equipment malfunction forces shutdown and extensive repairs at Crystal River Unit 30384
September 30, 1999Ibaraki Prefecture, JapanTokaimura nuclear accident killed two workers, and exposed one more to radiation levels above permissible limits.2544
February 16, 2002Oak Harbor, Ohio, United StatesSevere corrosion of control rod forces 24-month outage of Davis-Besse reactor01433
August 9, 2004Fukui Prefecture, JapanSteam explosion at Mihama Nuclear Power Plant kills 4 workers and injures 7 more491
July 25, 2006Forsmark, SwedenAn electrical fault at Forsmark Nuclear Power Plant caused one reactor to be shut down01002
March 12, 2011Fukushima, JapanA tsunami flooded and damaged the 5 active reactor plants drowning two workers. Loss of backup electrical power led to overheating, meltdowns, and evacuations.[27] One man died suddenly while carrying equipment during the clean-up.[28]2+7
12 September 2011Marcoule, FranceOne person was killed and four injured, one seriously, in a blast at the Marcoule Nuclear Site. The explosion took place in a furnace used to melt metallic waste.1

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