“The United States Nuclear Regulatory Commission issued a preliminary order yesterday requiring the owner of the Indian Point nuclear power plant to install a backup power source for its warning sirens by early next year.
A final order could be issued by the end of the month if the owner, Entergy Nuclear Northeast, waives a hearing.
The company would then have until Jan. 30 of next year to make the changes so that the sirens could continue to function during a power failure.
Last year, Congress passed legislation that had the effect of requiring the Indian Point plant, which is 35 miles north of Midtown Manhattan in Buchanan, N.Y., to have backup power for its emergency notification system.
Entergy officials said that the installation of generators at each of the 156 sirens was impractical, given the risks of vandalism and theft, and that attaching a battery to each siren would be hard since the speakers, which rotate, require so much energy.
In the end, the company decided on stationary four-way speakers, which could be powered by smaller backup batteries. A spokesman for Entergy, Jim Steets, said that the company would spend “at least several million dollars” to upgrade the system.”
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