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Taipower will not reinspect No. 2 nuclear power plant

2012/05/22 22:55:41

Taipei, May 22 (CNA) A Taiwan Power Company (Taipower) spokesman said Tuesday that the company had no plans to recheck 36 anchor bolts of a nuclear reactor at the No. 2 nuclear power plant as demanded by opposition Democratic Progressive Party Legislator Cheng Li-chiun.

Taipower spokesman Roger Lee said there are no further safety concerns after sonar inspections of 120 anchor bolts and the replacement of seven fractured bolts in reactor No. 1 were approved by the Executive Yuan's Atomic Energy Council.

The council has adopted the highest standard of inspections and has sent people to supervise and record the inspection process. The utility company has not hidden anything from the public, Lee said.

He was responding to claims by Cheng and Wu Tsung-tsong, a professor at National Taiwan University's Institute of Applied Mechanics, that the company purposely concealed from the public the possibility that 36 anchor bolts in the plant's first reactor were "probably" fractured.

According to Cheng and Wu, neither of whom have ever seen the bolts in question, the utility company fabricated the inspection results. They demanded at a press conference Tuesday that the council recheck the bolts and shut down the reactor until it is cleared of safety concerns.

Wu said the company should conduct regular monthly checks on the reactor's bolts, while Cheng said the company should allow third party nuclear experts to conduct inspections of the Wanli, New Taipei plant.

Another DPP legislator, Lin Shu-fen, who also attended the press conference, said in mid-March when the fractured bolts were identified and there was a vibration in reactor No. 1. Taipower however, ignored experts' concerns about the issue.

In addition, the utility company plans to reactivate the reactor, making it appear as if the company is downplaying safety concerns, she added.

Cheng and Lin said they will ask the council to deliver a report at the Legislative Yuan's Education and Culture Committee the following day and said that if the council is determined to defend Taipower, thy will file a complain with the Control Yuan against the it.

(By Wen Kuei-hsiang and C.J. Lin)