This report details how the Nuclear Regulatory Commission bungled an effort to create a new rule to require entrance guards at nuclear power plants.
To read report, open pdf:
August 19, 2009
Changed F.B.I. Agents’ Role Shown When Radioactive Material Went Missing
By ERIC SCHMITT
NORWALK, Calif. — The report last month was chilling: a 55-gallon drum of radioactive material had gone missing during shipment from North Carolina to California. Even worse, the person who signed for the cargo was not an employee of the company that ordered the load.
The Federal Bureau of Investigation here ramped up, consulting health officials, questioning radiation specialists and tracking down the trucker who dropped off the material, which could be used in a radioactive-bomb attack. Three hours later, the shipper found the drum — still sitting on a loading dock 20 miles from its destination in the Los Angeles area — having confused it with a similar shipment sent to a different company on the same day.
For an F.B.I. team here that vets tips and threats about possible terrorist activity, it was yet another false alarm in a job largely defined by hoaxes and bogus leads that must still be run to ground.
“A lot of time we are chasing shadows,” said Lee Ann Bernardino, a 20-year F.B.I. special agent who handled the case, “but it’s better to do that than find out later you let something get by.”
Security Is Better, but Steps Don't Go Far Enough
By Scott Portzline
In the summer before the 9-11 attacks, Al Qaeda operatives traveled to Three Mile Island on a surveillance mission.
To read the full story, open pdf:
Re-published by Three Mile Island Alert - February 2009
Originally published March 2004
Because the Nuclear Regulatory Commission continues to publicize false
information about the TMI accident, we correct the record once again. The
NRC’s erroneous statements are listed in the red text which follows.
“The main feedwater pumps stopped running, caused by either a mechanical
or electrical failure, which prevented the steam generators from removing
To read more of John Schmidt's account of his post-9/11 work as a security officer at Peach Bottom Atomic Power Plant, see:
incidents at Three Mile Island (which is owned by the same company and
contacts to the same security vendor) before the NRC woke up and announced a
bizarre strategy to probe sleeping on the job."
To read the complete letter from TMIA to the NRC, open pdf.
To view the NRC's letter to Exelon, dated Oct. 4, 2007, regarding the agency's inspection following an incident of inattentive security officers (sleeping guards) at the Peach Bottom plant, open this pdf.
By Scott D. Portzline
The Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) will vote against adopting a requirement for guards at nuclear power plant entrances some time before spring 2009.
The vast majority of citizens, legislators and government officials agree with Three Mile Island Alert’s petition for rulemaking to add such a rule.