Nebraska's two nuclear plants near Omaha on alert

Friday, June 24, 2011

Fort Calhoun on June 16, 2011 during the 2011 Missouri River Floods
Image: United States Army Corps of Engineers.

Two nuclear power plants in Nebraska, US, near the city of Omaha, remain on alert following flooding. One is shut down pending floodwater receding.

The Fort Calhoun nuclear reactor - 19 miles north from Omaha - has been shut down since April 9 partly due to flooding from the Missouri River. It sits nearly two feet below the current river level. This month, the plant lost power needed to cool the spent fuel pool for a short time after a fire.

The current flooding with record water releases is expected to stay at high levels until August, so that another plant, Cooper Nuclear Station, to the south and further from Omaha, will soon be concerned, too.

On Wednesday the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) said that it was keeping an eye on the situation and both plants have taken action for protection against the rising floodwaters.