The State : A-Plant Start May Be Stalled

Restart of the Rancho Seco nuclear power plant may be delayed because of a scathing industry report criticizing management for the last two shutdowns. Officials at the Sacramento Municipal Utility District, which owns Rancho Seco, tentatively had scheduled March 5 as the restart date. But David Boggs, SMUD's general manager, said extra time probably will be needed to evaluate the report. "We were hopeful that it (restart) would be very early in March, but until these issues are addressed, the plant will not be restarted," Boggs said. "We are not going to have the plant restarted if it is not safe." A recent report by the Institute of Nuclear Power Operations, an Atlanta-based, industry-financed watchdog group, criticized Rancho Seco for mismanagement, engineering deficiencies, mechanical failures and other problems relating to two unplanned shutdowns in the last two months. Rancho Seco has been idle since an auxiliary feed-water pump sped out of control Jan. 31.

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