U.S. Shuts Down 4 Nuclear Reactors

from the Washington Post

The Department of Energy has ordered four research reactors shut down indefinitely at its Oak Ridge, Tenn., atomic complex, the seventh time in seven months that the DOE has ordered safety-related shutdowns or power reductions at one of its nuclear facilities.

The agency announced Friday that it had shut the Oak Ridge reactors because of "management deficiencies" that could compromise safety.

Since September, the agency has halted operations at nine research or weapons-production facilities, including four of its 11 large, Class A reactors, because of operational difficulties or questionable safety systems.

The Oak Ridge shutdown, ordered Thursday by plant manager Joseph LaGrone, involved one Class A reactor and three smaller plants, all of which are used to conduct research or produce radioactive isotopes for medical use.

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