Records show dozens of drone incidents over U.S. nuclear power plants, including swarms in 2019

Records show dozens of drone incidents over U.S. nuclear power plants, including swarms in 2019

[Ed. – It doesn’t seem excessive to adjust FAA regulations so that drone overflight of these installations is not allowed at any altitude, except with permission.  (The article refers to altitude restrictions being in place now; i.e., drones must remain above 400 feet AGL. But at night that can be hard to determine.)  I have zero problem with nuclear power plants having the capability to disable drones and drop them; e.g., with lasers.]

This particular story starts on Sept. 29, 2019. Shortly before 11:00 PM local time at the Palo Verde Nuclear Generating Station, Daphne Rodriguez, an Acting Security Section Chief at the plant, called the duty officer at NRC’s Headquarters Operations Center (HOC). Rodriguez reported that a number of drones were flying over and around a restricted area near the nuclear power plant’s Unit 3, which houses one of its three pressurized water reactors.

Thomas Kendzia, a Headquarters Emergency Response Officer (HERO) at the HOC, subsequently created an incident report in the NRC’s Security Information Database (SID). …

Personnel at the HOC also then called the duty officer at the NRC’s Intelligence Liaison and Threat Assessment Branch (ILTAB), a division of the Office of Nuclear Security and Incident Response. …

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That wasn’t the end of it, though, for Palo Verde. The very next night, Ismael Garcia, a Security Supervisor at the plant called ILTAB to report another drone incursion over sensitive areas. …

Four (4) drones were observed flying beginning at 2051 MST [on Sept. 30, 2019] and continuing through the time of this report (2113 MST). As occurred last night, the drones are flying in, through, and around the owner controlled area, the security owner controlled area, and the protected area.

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