Don’t idealize safety of Indian Point plant

This is in response to the letter of March 1 by Bridget Kelly extolling the safety of the Indian Point nuclear power plant.

She writes hard hats and safety glasses had to be worn, which is all well and good, but they do not protect anyone from nuclear contamination.

She also states we have to have energy sources that are safe and environmentally sound. What about all the radioactive waste created by nuclear plants and all the fish killed in their cooling process; plus the potential catastrophic fallout if something should go wrong? Things have gone wrong in the past.

In closing, she says Indian Point is truly safe and secure. She must have supernatural powers to know this after only two guided tours.

I am not rating the plant on its safety or security, but we cannot view it through rose-colored glasses.

Joan W. Furman, Wappingers Falls

Tours aside, safety fears at Indian Point are valid

I would like to respond to a March 1 letter by Bridget Kelly, in which she describes a tour through the Indian Point nuclear facility with a group of high school students.

Kelly seems to base her conclusions about the safety of the plant on the fact that the employees wore hard hats and safety glasses. She said the tour guides answered all their questions satisfactorily. Did she ask if there was proper separation of electrical cables in tunnels? The government agency — the Nuclear Regulatory Commission — that monitors the safety at Indian Point has found cables that were not properly separated. Plant managers will assure the public that if one system fails, there is another backup system that will go into effect and deal with the problem. If cables that control the reactor are in the same tunnel as the backup cables and a fire occurs in the tunnel, the backup system will also fail.

A survey of Indian Point security guards revealed 82 percent of them felt they would not be able to repel an attack by the same number of terrorists that took down the Twin Towers and damaged the Pentagon.

A December 2003 nuclear commission report indicated there were nine unplanned outages between December 2001 and August 2003. Between 2004 and 2005 there were another six unplanned outages. Since March 1, a test of Indian Point’s warning sirens has failed again.

Tom Baldino, Beacon

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