Reactor at Belarusian Nuclear Power Plant Damaged, Environmental NGO Reports

The environmental non-government organization Ecohome has reported that the cooling system of the first reactor of the Astravyets Power Plant in Belarus was damaged, citing several independent sources last Nov. 30.

The environmental non-government organization Ecohome has reported that the cooling system of the first reactor of the Astravyets Power Plant in Belarus was damaged, citing several independent sources last Nov. 30.

Ecohome said in a statement that they received information regarding a malfunction on the cooling system of the first reactor, saying that a “major emergency” took place at the power plant “at the end of hydrotesting.”

“Due to the unopened valve, during the pumping out of the liquid at the end of the tests, the tanker of the emergency cooling system of the first reactor was damaged. Most likely, the tank has imploded. It requires replacement, but since replacing the tank is tantamount to admitting an accident, they try to fix it instead,” Ecohome stated.

Meanwhile, state-owned news agency Belta reported last Nov. 24 that the capacities of the first power unit was gradually increasing at the time of the testing.

Ecohome further cited its sources who said that “the valve is bent, “the container has sucked in,” and that the cooling system was “leaked” to confirm the implosion of the tank.

“This is unacceptable and can lead to a severe beyond design basis accident of the Fukushima type, therefore we demand an immediate halt of all pilot operations, the shutdown of the reactor facility itself and an investigation of this incident,” Ecohome stated.

On Dec. 1,  Belta reported that the first power unit is still under “complex tests.”

Days after its launch in early November, the transformer of the power plant exploded, stopping its operations for several days. It resumed operations last Nov. 19.


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