NY: Bird poop fingered in December reactor shutdown

NY: Bird poop fingered in December reactor shutdown
Lesser offenders? (Image: Shutterstock)

[Ed. – The shutdown was originally reported on 14 December.]

Bird poop was the likely cause of a December shutdown at a nuclear power plant outside New York City, according to the operator.

An Indian Point reactor safely shut down for three days starting Dec. 14 following an electrical disturbance on outdoor high voltage transmission lines, Entergy Corp. said. An outside expert is analyzing whether what’s technically called bird “streaming” was the culprit.

In a report to the Nuclear Regulatory Commission last month, the New Orleans-based company said the automatic reactor shutdown was apparently from bird excrement that caused an electric arc between wires on a feeder line at a transmission tower. …

Nuclear Regulatory Commission spokesman Eliot Brenner said it’s not uncommon for wildlife to trigger electrical outages on transmission lines regardless of the generation source of the electricity. “Squirrels are the biggest offenders,” he said.

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