Continued - 1975-1979

205. 1975, January - DRESDEN 2, ILLINOIS, U.S.A.

The Dresden No 2 B.W.R. reactor had to be shut down after cracks were found in the high-pressure piping of the emergency core cooling system. The cracks penetrated the full thickness of the piping resulting in a water coolant leakage. A loss of coolant accident could have occurred resulting in reactor coolant blowing out of the ruptured pipe and exploding into steam. The cracks were discovered by accident. "Large cracks had occurred in other unrelated piping, which leaked noticeable quantities of water and similar cracks were then found in many boiling water reactors in the same piping." (Webb, R.E. p.201)

206. 1975, 8th January - MIHAMA 2, JAPAN

Leak in pipes of steam generator of the Mihama 2 reactor (500 megawatts) caused radioactive gas to escape. ("Nuclear News", March 1975 Patterson, p.213; "L'Escroguerie Nucleaire")

207. 1975, 30th January - U.S.A.

U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission orders shut down of 23 boiling water reactors, because of hairline cracks found in coolant pipes at Dresden. Second time in nine months that U.S. plants closed. (Sien/LNS Aus Uranium Kit, August, 1975; Nucleus, 25th July, 1979)


Nearly 1,200 workers had to be evacuated from the Northwest Utilities Nuclear Plant because of a radioactive water spill. Some of the contaminated water entered Long Island Sound. 20 workers had to wade through 4,000 litres of spilt radioactive water to safety. (Penelope Coleing; Work Circle Environmental Protection)

209. 1981, 6th May - TSURUGA, JAPAN

A radioactive leak far worse than those uncovered recently occurred at the Japan Atomic Power Company's Tsuruga Power Plant six years ago, it has just been disclosed. The Company said the accident was discovered on 10/1/1975, when 13 tonnes of radioactive water leaked from a crack in a pipe. The Company said 37 workers were exposed. ("The Age" 6th May 1981)

210. 1975, May - WINDSCALE, U.K.

Leak of radioactive waste found its way through two successive leaks. Corrosion is a possible cause. (Wakstein, C., Nucleus, 25th July, 1979)

211. 1975, 22nd May - CON EDISON INDIAN POINT AEC, NY, USA

Inspection shows that, despite corrective measures taken for earlier violations, reactor workers are still exposed to above maximum permissible levels set by A.E.C. (Nucleus, 25th July, 1979, p.16)


An operator's error dumped 50,000 gallons of radioactive water into the basement of the Oyster Creek nuclear plant. (Clamshell Alliance p.4)


There have been at least 271 fires and 410 "Contamination incidents" at Rocky Flats. The cancer rate among Rocky Flats workers is seven times the national average. Hundreds of railway cars carry the waste from Rocky Flats' worst fire (11th May, 1969) to Idaho Falls where it was dumped in trenches in the ground.

These trenches are above the nation's largest underground water reservoir, a source of water for much of the Northwest. An A.E.C.spokesman said "we have substantial technical experience. There's no real or potential basis for alarm - ever." The National Academy of Sciences have condemned the practices of the dump. (Clamshell Alliance, p.1)

214. 1975 - TURKEY POINT, U.S.A.

Large leaks of radioactive water were discovered at this Miami Reactor. (Clamshell Alliance, p.4)

215. 1975, 6th June - ZION, U.S.A.

15,000 gallons of radioactive water leaked from cooling system into reactor containment building. N.R.C. blamed the leak on open valve caused by failure to observe proper procedures. Zion has had the highest rate and number of abnormal occurrences of any nuclear power plant in the U.S. (Penelope Coleing; "The 10 Most Dangerous Nuclear Power Plants", The Elements, Feb. 1977, in Guyorgy, p.120)

216. 1975, July - VERMONT YANKEE PLANT, U.S.A.

Faulty valves allowed 300,000 litres of radioactive water from plant to spill into river. (Nucleus, 25th July, 1979, p.15)

217. 1975, September - JAPAN

Japanese nuclear ship MUTSU found leaking radioactivity due to faulty design of reactor shield. (Nucleus, 25th July, 1979, p.15)

218. 1975, October - PHOENIX REACTOR, FRANCE

Reactor at Phoenix develops leak forcing plenty closure (the sodium coolant can explode on contact with water even at normal temperatures).

219. 1975, October - LENINGRAD, U.S.S.R.

Local core melt at Leningrad-1. A day later, over 1.5 million curies are released through the stack. ("Nucleonics Week" 31/5/90; WISE334 22/6/90).

220. 1975, December - U.K.

Nuclear waste train derailed in town on transit from Barrow to Windscale reprocessing plant. ("Times", 20th December, 1975, p.1)

221. 1975 - LA HAGUE, FRANCE

572 incidents of radioactive contamination of workers, 205 internal contamination. (Nucleus, 25/7/1979 p.1)

222. 1975 - OKLAHOMA, U.S.A.

Plutonium poisoning of workers in enrichment plant. Chief witness died in mysterious circumstances. (Work Circle Environmental Protection)

223. 1975 - BROWN'S FERRY, ALABAMA, U.S.A.

Fire in plant caused by electrician checking for air flow with candle. Destruction of 2,000 cables, emergency core cooling system, reactor core isolation cooling system and all important regulators and emergency cooling systems. Only chance prevented the melting of the 1100 megawatt reactor. Out of service for 1-1/2 hours. A Senate investigation revealed that the final reactor design had been approved even though it did not meet regulatory requirements. The total cost of the accident was at least $150 million, making it the most expensive industrial accident on record. (Work Circle Environmental Protection; Guyorgy, p.120; Webb, p.198; Clamshell Alliance p.4)


Two deaths followed leak of 800 litres of radioactive steam during vent repairs. (Work Circle Environmontal Protection)

225. 1975, 30th November - LENINGRAD

Soviet authorities have admitted to the occurrence of a severe accident at a Leningrad nuclear power plant on 30 November 1985. After the rupture of a faulty tube, large amounts of radioactivity (mainly radioactive iodine) had been set free and were found as far away as 2,000 km. The local population had not been warned. ("Sudkurier (FRG) 18/6/90; WISE-336 20/7/90).

226. 1975 - U.S.A.

22 accidents recorded in the Nugget File for 1975


Extensive leakage of "hot" radioactive gas in which two workers were suffocated, the emergency exit which they made for was locked "to prevent frequent thefts". The four emergency "decoy" tanks designed to deal with escaping gas by reducing radioactivity before it released into the atmosphere could not cope with a leakage of this magnitude and radioactive gas escaped into the atmosphere. The public were not warned of the dangers and workers at the plant were not allowed to know the level of radiation they had absorbed.

228. 1976, 12th January - KENTUCKY, U.S.A.

Six drums containing radioactive waste burst open after they rolled off tractor-trailer trucks in Ashfield, Kentucky, U.S.A. Two drivers were slightly injured. When the highway was cleaned checks indicated radioactivity. (Legislative Research Service Paper, Parliamentary Library, Canberra)

229. 1976, January - WINDSCALE, U.K.

Leak of radioactive waste in storage tank caused by corrosion. (Parliamentary Research Service Paper, Parliamentary Library, Canberra)


Primary circuit overheated while new fuel rods were mounted, rupturing steam generator; primary and secondary circuit and working area contaminated. ("New Ecologist", January/February 1979)

231. 1976, April - MAXY FLATS, KENTUCKY, U.S.A.

Further leak of radioactive waste at Maxy Flats. (Nucleus, 2Sth July, 1979)

232. 1976, April - WINDSCALE, U.K.

Leak of radioactive waste from still drums caused by corrosion. (Parliamentary Legislative Research Service Paper, Parliamentary Library, Canberra)

233. 1976, WINDSCALE, U.K.

Further leak of radioactive waste from steel drums after corrosion. (Nucleus, 25th July, 1979)

234. 1976, July - PORT HOPE, CANADA

Discovery that in Port Hope, Canada, which was built on uranium waste landfill, radiation levels in some buildings are 100 times more than safe. Bone marrow abnormalities found in town residents. (Nucleus, 25th July, 1979, p.18; Craw Doo Dah Gazette, August, 1976)


Reactor at Phoenix developed fault in heat exchange between primary and secondary sodium cooling circuits (sodium can explode on contact with water even at normal temperatures).

236. 1976, JULY - LA HAGUE, FRANCE

Leak at Capede la Hague reprocessing plant, discharge into sewerage system. Eight workers inhale plutonium dust (concentration of plutonium 1,000 times greater than permissable dosage in parts of plant). Took seven months to repair.

237. 1976, mid-July - VERMONT YANKEE PLANT, U.S.A.

Faulty valve caused 300,000 litres of Tritium contaminated water to spill into the Connecticut River. This was the second of three spills. (Guyorgy, p.120; Clamshell Alliance p.4)

238. 1976, 13th October - PARIS, FRANCE

France's most advanced nuclear reactor had been closed for an indefinite period because of a leak in one of the three devices that transferred heat from one fluid to another, an Atomic Energy Official reported. (A.A.P. Reuter, "Newcastle Morning Herald")

239. 1976, October - FRANCE

Streams reported to be contaminated near La Hague reprocessing plant. One stream from which cattle drank reported containing 3,800 picocuries/litre water. (Nucleus, 25th July, p.18)

240. 1976, October - WINDSCALE, U.K.

All British nuclear fuel workers received above internationally agreed upon radiation levels in 1976. (Intern. Press/Nucleus, 16th August, 1978)

241. 1976, October - WINDSCALE, U.K.

100 gallons per day of contaminated water leaking from an old waste storage silo. This incident was not reported to the Government for two months, and eventually set off the Windscale Public Enquiry. (Parliamentary Legislative Research Service Paper, Parliament House, Canberra)

242. 1976, November - PILGRIM PLANT, BOSTON EDISON, U.S.A.

16,000 herring were killed, probably by thermal shock at Boston Edison's Pilgrim Plant on Cape Cod Bay. (Clamshell Alliance Publication p.4)

243. 1976, November - WINDSCALE, U.K.

Leak of radioactive waste. Beach contaminated by tritium. (Parliamentary Legislative Research Service Paper, Parliament House, Canberra)

244. 1976 - MAXY FLATS, KENTUCKY, U.S.A.

Plutonium dumped in unlined trenches, travelled 800 feet through soil in less than ten years. (Thieberger p.12)

245. 1976 - U.S.A.

17 accidents were recorded in the Nugget File for 1976. This is the last entry in the extract. The postscript concludes: "What is really distressing is that despite the vast amount of specific technical information concerning the frailties and defects of critically important safety apparatus, the Federal agency in charge of nuclear safety has not taken adequate measures to prevent these recurring safety lapses." (Nugget File p.75)


Radioactive mist that escaped from the Millstone plants in Waterford activated nuclear alarms in nuclear submarines docked at Groton. (Clamshell Alliance, p.4)

247. 1977 March - KOZLODUJ, BULGARIA

An unexpectedly strong earthquake (5-6 on the modified Mercalli scale) shook the nuclear plant which was only built to withstand quakes of lower intensity. ("Der Spiegel" 20 Apr 87, WISE NC 275 12 Jun 87)

248. 1977, 6th April - WINDSCALE, U.K.

Site and adjacent area contaminated by Ruthenium 106. (Legislative Research Service Paper, Parliamentary Library, Canberra; Wakstein, C; "The Ecologist", May 1977 p.140)

249. 1977, 6th April - WINDSCALE, U.K.

Plutonium contamination blown into laboratory after a reaction between plutonium nitrate and carbon powder in a sealed handling facility. (Thieberger, p.12; Parliamentary Service Paper, Parliamentary Library, Canberra)


Australia's first victim died as a result of being exposed to radiation at the Atomic Energy Commission's nuclear reactor at Lucas Heights. The man contracted leukemia. The A.E.C. admitted liability by paying compensation to the man's widow. Two years before the death, workers had complained of a health problem which they thought was related to their work with epoxies. ("Sun Herald", 19th June, 1977)

251. 1977, 10th May - DOUNREAY, SCOTLAND

A reaction between water and 2.5 kilos of sodium lifted the concrete covers off a solid waste disposal facility. (Thieberger, p.12)

252. 1977, May - WINCHESTER, U.K.

Semi-trailer carrying a 15-tonne container of radioactive nuclear fuel overturned near Winchester. Five people injured. (Legislative Research Service Paper, Parliamentary Library, Canberra)

253. 1977, July - HINKLEY POINT, U.S.A.

Power plant shut down until December when a pipe supplying feedwater to the main coolant system fractured. Hoses had to be rigged up to spray cooling water on the concrete shielding of the primary reactor. (Ian Breach, "Windscale Fallout", p.39)

254. 1977, 7th October - COLORADO, U.S.A.

Nuclear alert declared near Springfield after 19 tonnes of powdered uranium-oxide fell from the back of a truck after an accident. The material was being transported from Wyoming to Oklahoma for processing. Colorado State Department later urged the N.R.C. to review its safety standards. Department spokesman said: "Luckily no other traffic came along. If cars had churned through the powder we could have been faced with a major crisis". ("West Australian", 7th October, 1977)

255. 1977, November - PIERRKLATE, FRANCE

Highly toxic gas leaked into the air from a commercial uranium fuels factory. No-one was contaminated and the situation was quickly controlled. The leak of uranium hexaflouoride at the Comurex factory is where a similar accident took place in July. ("The Herald", 26th November, 1977)


Four Commonwealth policemen died of cancer after working at the atomic bomb test site. Another two are dying of the disease. (Thieberger p.13)

257. 1977, December - MILLSTONE, CONNECTICUT, U.S.A.

Two hydrogen/oxygen explosions in the waste radioactive gas stream at Millstone Nuclear Power Station, Waterford, Connecticut, U.S.A. Chimney door blew off. One worker slightly injured and helpers contaminated with radioactivity. Reactor completely shut down. (Parliamentary Legislative Research Service paper, Parliament Library, Canberra)

258. 1977 December - HUNTERSTON B, U.K.

Unprecedented failure in which 1,000 gallons of sea water leaked into the reactor. Cost of accident: 4 million pounds sterling. (Ian Breach "Windscale Fallout", p.139)

259. 1977, December - BARODA, INDIA

Heavy water factory at Baroda, 300 miles north of Bombay was partially destroyed by a series of explosions following fire. 20 injured. (Nucleus, 25th July, 1979 p.17)

260. 1977, December - COLORADO, U.S.A.

10,000 lbs. of radioactive uranium concentrate spreads over 5,000 square miles, in some placed up to a foot deep after a truck crashes. Wrong decontamination equipment sent to area. 12 hours before health specialist on scene. ("Nation Review", 3rd May, 1979)

261. 1977 - VERMONT YANKEE, U.S.A.

Truck carrying spent radioactive resins from Vermont Yankee reactor crashes. Second time in two years that a truck from Vermont Yankee was involved in a crash.

262. 1977 - BELOYARSK 2, U.S.S.R.

Half of the fuel assemblies melt at Beloyarsk 2 U.S.S.R. Irradiation of staff during repairs which last a year ("Nucleonics Week" 31/5/90; WISE-33; 22/6/90)


General Electric's small reactor closed because Federal officials found seismic fault near the plant. ("Financial Review" 28th February 1979)

264. 1978, 23rd January - COLORADO, U.S.A.

Newly built reactor belches radioactive helium gas into the into the sky only 56 kms. from Denver, Colorado. 15 workers suffered "light contamination". Reactor shut down. ("The Herald" 24th January 1978)

265. 1978, 25th January - BRUSSELS,TIHANGE, BELGIUM

Contamination of up to 80 people by Iodine 131 while the reactor was being cooled for replacement of fuel. Another accident occurred in this month. (World Information Service on Energy, Brussels)

266. 1978, January - U.S.S.R. IN NORTHERN CANADA

The nuclear powered Soviet Satellite Cosmos 954 fell out of its orbit and plunged into the tundra of Northern Canada spreading radioactive material over a wide area. It contained a specially designed nuclear reactor which was fuelled by 100 lbs of Uranium 235, with an explosive power five times the force of Hiroshima. Launched on 18th September, 1977, the 954 was ill-fated from the beginning. The radioactive debris was not discovered in initial searches. DR. ROGER EATEN of the Atomic Energy Control Board warned residents of Fort Resolution not to use the top layer of snow for making tea and not to eat the bone marrow of game animals. "One orbit in the final unstable minutes could have caused it to strike near New York City". No official information has ever been released as to the purpose of the satellite. There is about half a ton of enriched uranium and a hundred or more pounds of plutonium circling overhead today. The Russians have 11 reactor models flying and the Americans have nine vehicles in orbit. (Burleson, p.243) 6 satellites have already made their re-entry complete with their nuclear centres. The dangers of nuclear-powered satellites are that the upper atmosphere could be contaminated over a wide area and on re-entry large areas could be contaminated by radiation. (Nucleus, 14/6/1978; Burleson, C.W., "The Day the Bomb Fell", Great Britain, 1980, pp 227-245).

267. 1978, 14th February - BAVARIA, WEST GERMANY

Small amount of radioactive steam escaped from a nuclear plant being tested in Bavaria. ("The Age", 15th February, 1978)

268. 1978, March - CRYSTAL RIVER, FLORIDA, U.S.A.

Crystal River 3 plant closed for six months after defects in equipment controlling radioactivity levels in reactor. ("Nation Review", 3/5/1979)

269. 1978, 8th March - BASQUE, SPAIN

A group bombed a nuclear power plant under construction in Basque Country. $2 million damage done. ("Tribune", 8th March, 1978)

270. 1978, April - OREGON, U.S.A.

Two workers exposed to high levels of radiation when monitoring devices fail at Jan Plant, Rainier, Oregon, U.S.A. (Nucleus, 15th July, 1979, p.17)

271. 1978, April - LENOWIZ, BILBOA, SPAIN

Four Basque Spaniards launch hand grenade attacks on nuclear power station at Lemoniz, near Bilboa, Spain. ("New Ecologist", March/April, 1978)

272. 1978, April - INDIA

It was revealed that a C.I.A. electronic spy-station was destroyed in an avalanche. It contained 1.3 kg of a plutonium isotope. The station had been placed on Nanda Deve, a mountain of the Himalayas to spy on Chinese missile bases. The Nanda Deve snow waters run into the River Ganges, and so plutonium may be washed down to the millions of people who bathe, wash and drink using the water of the Ganges. ("The Australian", 12th April 1978)

273. 1978, mid-June - TIHANGE, BELGIUM

There was another accident at the P.W.R. reactor at Tihange, Belgium. This time a joint gave way on the primary cooling circuit, releasing radioactive steam. Workers in protective clothing tried for several days to stop the breach. Finally French specialists were brought in. The news was leaked by an anonymous phone call to Belgium Friends of the Earth. The reactor authorities denied that there had been an explosion. (W.I.S.E. No 2 p.13)

274. 1978, 19th June - BRUNSBUTTLE, GERMANY

Reactor steam circuit broke. The security system either failed to work or was put out of action manually and at least 100 tonnes of radioactive steam escaped. News of the accident got out through an anonymous phone call. Later mesaurements indicated some 4,000 curies of radioactive inert gasses escaped (against a yearly authorized level of 3,500 curies). (A.B.C. Radio News, 25th June 1978)

275. 1978, 28th August - ALDERMASTON, U.K.

Britain's main nuclear research station and Atomic Weapons Research Establishment was closed by Ministry of Defence, when 12 workers were contaminated with plutonium dust. Unions of the workers believed that the plutonium dust may have leaked through the plant's ventilation system. ("West Australian", 26th August, 1978) Three laundry women have suffered plutonium contamination of the lungs. The laundry deals with protective clothing in the Active area.. One of the women has not worked in the laundry for some years but she still carries a lung burden of plutonium above the permitted maximum and perhaps higher. Women in the laundry are not considered as radiation workers and are not required by law to be regularly monitored for radioactivity. (W.I.S.E. No 4 March, 1979)

276. 1978, September - TOKAI-KURA, JAPAN

Japan's nuclear reprocessing plant at Tokai-Kura closed because of leakage of radioactive waste. (Legislative Research Service Paper, Parliamentary Library, Canberra)

277. 1978, 21st October - MURUROA ATOLL, SOUTH PACIFIC

15 Tahitians had been secretly isolated in a hospital at Mururoa Atoll for treatment of radiation sickness, following French nuclear tests in the area, according to Mr. Oscar Temaru, a Tahitian politician. ("West Australian", 21st October 1979)

278. 1978, December - VENDELLA, SPAIN

Hot water from reactor sterilizes area of 8 square kms around pipe outlet, area contamination expanding. ("New Ecologist", November/December 1978)

279. 1978, 31st December - BELOYARSK-2, U.S.S.R.

Fire at Beloyarak-2 caused by the collapse of the turbine building roof. The control cable is completely burned and the reactor cannot be controlled. Eight people are irradiated while trying to inject coolant into the reactor. ("Nucleonics Week" 31/5/90; WISB-334 22/6/90).

280. 1978 - U.S.A.

2,835 accidents at U.S. nuclear plants. Every plant involved was closed temporarily at least once for safety reasons. ("National Review", 3rd May 1979)


Two leaks occurred in primary cooling system in the Hifar reactor at LUCAS HEIGHTS. (W.I.S.E. No 5, p.14)

282. 1978 - IDAHO FALLS, ID., U.S.A.

Plutonium waste dug up after seven years because it was leaking from the barrels in which it had been buried, causing a threat to the water supply. (Penelope Coleing for M.A.U.M.)

283. 1978, 26th August - TITAN II NUCLEAR BASE, KANSAS, U.S.A.

One man was killed and six injured when deadly fumes leaked from an intercontinental ballistic missile which were being filled with propellant. When the accident was reported gas was still leaking, forcing the evacuation of residents of Udall Rock. Reaction to the gas can range from mild to severe irritation of the eyes, ears, nose, throat and skin, to severe burns and death. The accident would have resulted in a nuclear explosion if the missile had been carrying its nuclear warhead. ("The West Australian" 26/8/1978)


The US Nuclear Regulatory Commission is only now [1989] investigating a major radioactive spill that happened 11 years ago [1978] at the Nine Mile Point 1 nuclear power plant in Oswego, New York. The NRC began its investigation in response to a story aired in August by a local TV station. The station reported Niagara Mohawk Power Corp., the plant's owner, has kept the spill secret ever since it happened. It's not yet clear if the spill was ever reported to the NRC. The contaminated area is in a radioactive waste building near the reactor, according to a confidential Niagara Mohawk report obtained by the television station. The report says a 4,000 square foot area in the building is so radioactive no one has been allowed inside since 1978. Radiation levels of up to 400 REMs per hour make it impossible for people to enter the area and the utility has only gained access to the area with a robot. The confidential report, commissioned by Niagara Mohawk, indicates that about 150 barrels, many of them containing highly radioactive sludge, had fallen off their pallets, emptying some of their contents on floors and wells. (Radioactive sludge is left over after water used in the reactor is purified). After the spill occurred, Niagara Mohawk blocked the area off and took no action to clean it up until three year ago. Nine Mile 1 has been out of service since December 1987. ("Solstice" magazine via Greennet 28/8/89; WISE-318 29/9/89).

285. 1979 - Present, CHURCH ROCK, NEW MEXICO, U.S.A.

Church Rock Uranium Mill, New Mexico continues to leak 40,000 to 80,000 gallons of radioactive waste per month into underground squifers and streams. New Mexico officials' attempts to stop contamination resulting from a uranium tailings spill two years ago is considered a joke by affected area residents. (W.I.S.E. Vol 3, No. 4 September 1981 p.18)

286. 1979 - U.S.A.

Critical Mass Energy Project - Washington has compiled a listing of the 2,000 nuclear mishaps that occurred in 1979 at U.S. nuclear reactors. The list includes the type of reactor and its manufacturer.

287. 1979, January - WINDSCALE, U.K.

Residents living near Windscale Plant exposed to radiation levels 15 times more than indicated; levels double long term value recommended by I.C.R.P. ("New Ecologist", January/February 1979)

288. 1979, February - SWITZERLAND

Bomb blast wrecks building at Kaiser Augat Plant - $528,000 damage. No injuries. ("Nucleus" 25th July 1979 p.17)

289. 1979, February - U.K.

Biggest accident since 1971 contaminated ground near plant. Tens of thousands of curies of radioactive liquid released. ("Sydney Morning Herald" 24/3/1979)

290. 1979, 2nd February - SWEDEN

A blocked pipe at a nuclear power station almost caused a disastrous chain reaction accident. The blockage caused enriched uranium liquid to leak into a transport container reaching criticality of 0.83 by the time the accident was discovered. If it had reach 1, an atomic chain reaction would have been triggered off, releasing massive amounts of radioactivity and heat. Workers at the station say that the management tried to get them to keep quiet about the accident. The management said it had no idea such accidents could happen when it established the station. A plant supervisor said that such accidents happen all the time; "....only last week we had to sweep up contaminated snow after radioactive dust blew up the chimney", he said. ("Tribune", 7th March 1979)

291. 1979, 2nd February - NORTH CAROLINA, U.S.A.

The Federal Bureau of Investigation recovered 68 kgs of uranium stolen by an employee at General Electric's plant at Wilmington, North Carolina. ("Sydney Morning Herald", 3rd September 1979 - AAP Router)

292. 1979, February - U.K.

British dockyard workers exposed to radiation while working on nuclear submarines show a greater than normal incidence of damaged chromosomes. These results are based on a ten-year study. The greater the radiation dose the worker received the greater the number of cells showing chromosome damage. Damage occurs even when radiation exposures are below internationally agreed safety standards. ("New Scientist", 15th February, 1979)

293. 1979, 14th March - U.S.A.

U.S. orders five large nuclear plants closed because of concern over their ability to withstand earthquakes. ("Sydney Morning Herald", 15/3/1979)

294. 1979, 27th March - KARI, SOUTH KOREA

South Korea's only nuclear reactor at Kari (near Pusan) closed because of leakage of contaminated radioactive water. Malfunction of 595,000 kilowatt plant similar to the reactor at Three Mile Island. Has had cooling system troubles in the past. ("West Australian", 4th April, 1979)

295. 1979, 28TH March - THREE MILE ISLAND, PA, U.S.A.

Dangerous gas bubble formed. Risk of hydrogen explosion. Some vital instruments were exposed to more radiation than they were designed to withstand. Reactor is so highly radioactive it may never re-open. Radioactivity in reactor building is 100 times lethal level. Three Mile Island accident had 150 precedents...150 valve failures in similar reactors, a U.S. Government official told the U.S. Senate. ("Daily News" lst May 1979)

296. 1979, 2nd April - TOKAI-KURA, JAPAN

Two workers are exposed to radioactivity. (W.I.S.E. No 5 May-June 1979 p.14)

297. 1979, 3rd April - JAPAN

Explosion in fuel reprocessing laboratory. (W.I.S.E. Op.Cit)

298. 1979, 11th April - GRENOBLE, FRANCE

Grenoble reactor automatically shut down as radioactive gas escapes. (W.I.S.E. no 5, 5/1979 p.14)

299. 1979, 13th April - BARSEBACK 1, SWEDEN

Fire in Barseback 1 generator - shut down six months with $US50 million damage. (W.I.S.B. Ibid.)

300. 1979, 20th April - BIG ROCK, MICHIGAN, U.S.A.

Leak of highly radioactive water in cooling system forces indefinite shut-down of Big Rock, Michigan. (W.I.S.E. Ibid.)

301. 1979, 20th April - BORSSKLEN, NETHERLANDS

Holland's only commercial reactor closes after turbine springs leak. (Nucleus, 25th July, p.17)


In the controversy caused by Harrisburg, a previously unpublished report has come to light. Two million gallons of radioactive cooling water from the reactor has been dumped into the local Woronora River every month for the past 19 years. Unconfirmed reports suggest that there has been a higher than normal rate of birth defects in the local hospital. The reactor will be closed down in mid-September (1979) for repairs especially to two leaks which occurred in the primary cooling system in 1978. Workers have threatened to refuse to start the reactor as it is old, understaffed and has inadequate monitoring devices. (W.I.S.E. No.5 p.14 "Daily News" 4/4/1979)

303. 1979 - CRYSTAL RIVER, U.S.A.

The nuclear plant was shut down for six weeks for refueling but the N.R.C. ordered the plant to remain closed until some equipment and procedure changes were made. It was four months before it began operating again. ("The Australian" 28th February 1978)

304. 1979, April - U.S.A.

Nuclear Regulatory Commission ordered the closure of all Babcock and Wilcox reactors temporarily to prevent power shortages in three States. Californians Governor, Mr. Jerry Brown, has accused the Nuclear Energy Industry of lying for 20 years. ("West Australian", 30th April 1979)

305. 1979, April - ROCKEY FLATS, COLORADO, U.S.A.

In Colorado, a small fire broke out at the Rocky Flats nuclear weapons plant but was extinguished quickly. No injuries were reported. ("Sydney Morning Herald", 9th April 1979)

306. 1979, April - ZION, ILLINOIS, U.S.A.

Radioactive gas escaped into the air and released 3,200 ltr of radioactive water within the plant. Three men were sprayed; "all wore protective clothing and tests had shown no traces of contamination," a company spokesman said "It was only because of the TMI accident that they had informed the N.R.C." ("West Australian", 3rd May, 1979). Comment: "Does this mean that previous accidents were not reported?"

307. 1979, 1st May - ZION, ILLINOIS, U.S.A.

Technical defect releases radioactive gas together with 650 gallons of water. (W.I.S.E. No.5 5/1979)

308. 1979, 3rd May - RANCHO SECO, U.S.A.

Reactor shut down. ("West Australian", 3/5/1979 )

309. 1979, 4th May - BELGIUM

Belgium Government calls for a study of their nuclear plants. (W.I.S.E. Ibid)

310. 1979, 5th May - DUNGENESS, ENGLAND

Dungeness plant closed after cracks found in cooling system. (W.I.S.E. Ibid; "West Australian", 7/5/1979)

311. 1979, 7th May - BROWN'S FERRY, ALABAMA, U.S.A.

Radioactivity released into the Tennessee River as a result of a leak in the generating units cooling system at Brown's Ferry Nuclear Plant. ("West Australian", 7th May, 1979)

312. 1979, 9th May - SURRY, RICHMOND, VIRGINIA, U.S.A.

Nuclear sabotage attempt at Surry Nuclear Power Plant. Caustic substance dumped into 62 of the 64 fuel elements through manhole-like openings in the floor of the fuel storage building. At first believed fuel rods would have to be reconstructed at a cost of $6 million but this did not prove necessary. Could have been extremely dangerous if rods were radioactive. "The Age", 10th May, 1979)

313. 1979, 11th May - LA HAGUE, FRANCE

Man tried to kill his employer with radioactive discs which he placed under the seat of his car. Enough radiation was given off to anyone exposed to them (a dose of 10 rems per hour). Recommended life-time dose for anyone is 25 rems and annual dose of 5 rems per year. (United Preen: "The Australian" 11th May 1979)

314. 1979, 11th May - GERMANY

Fire swept through a nuclear research centre, 100 metres from the nuclear reactor. Radioactive material was threatened by flames which burnt for 10 hours. ("West Australian", 14th May 1979) Fire in technical university laboratory, radioactive materials present and helium threatened to explode.

315. 1979, May-June - U.S.S.R.

Reports of prisoners dying through atomic radiation from A. Shifrin, the Director of a centre in the Soviet Union that investigates the Concentration Camps and Psychiatric Prisons in the U.S.S.R. Some of these camps are near atomic submarine bases. Prisoners from camps reportedly clean highly radioactive parts of the submarines and thus receive lethal doses of radiation. Other prisoners work in uranium mines and refineries where they are exposed to radiation. ("Baltic News", May-June 1979, based on an article "Novoye Rusakoye Siovas", a New York Periodical).

316. 1979, 2-3rd June - ZION, ILLINOIS, U.S.A.

Zion I (1100 P.W.R.) shut-down became of indications that there may be cracks or other flaws in the unit's steam supply system. (W.I.S.E. No.6, 10/1979)


Millstone 2 (828 P.W.R.) in Waterford shut-down to repair broken valve that had spewed radioactive steam. (W.I.S.E. Ibid.)

318. 1979, 6th June CADARACHE, FRANCE.

French Atomic Energy Commission reported leak in experimental reactor at Cadarache Nuclear Research Centre in southern France. ("Daily News" 6/6/1979)

319. 1979, 19th June - SURRY, VIRGINIA, U.S.A.

Two men claim responsibility for sabotaging plant to underscore lack of security. ("Newport News", AAP/AP; "Sydney Morning Herald", 19th June 1979, Nucleus, 25th July 1979 p.17)

320. 1979, 22nd June - PEACH BOTTOM 3, PENNSYLVANIA, U.S.A

Second uncontrolled release of radioactive gas in two days at Peach Bottom, Pennsylvania Unit 3 (1065 P.W.R.) nuclear reactor. (W.I.S.E. Ibid)

321. 1979, 25th June - DC COOK 2, MICHIGAN, U.S.A.

1,000 gallons of radioactive coolant water spray over upper level of containment building at DC Cook No. 2 reactor (1049 P.W.R.). The reactor was being tested prior to its being put back on line after it was closed on May 19th when cracks were discovered in two feed water piping system. DC Cook No. 1 reactor is undergoing repairs for cracked pipes. (W.I.S.E. Ibid)

322. 1979, 6th July -- MURUROA ATOLL, SOUTH PACIFIC

"Two people were killed last month and another four were injured in accidents following an underground nuclear explosion at France's Mururoa Atoll Test Area in the South Pacific Ocean. (Channel 9 News, Perth, 9th August, 1979 from A.A.P.)


Quebec's only nuclear power Station shut down indefinitely. Hugh Spence of the Atomic Energy Control Board said that this reactor was fraught with problems from the beginning. "It is possible that Gentilly 1 will have to be closed permanently. The generating plant condemned by some scientists as a 'lemon' has functioned for only 10 days since opening in May, 1977". "West Australian" 11/7/1979)

324. 1979, l6th July - CHURCH ROCK, NEW MEXICO, U.S.A.

Tailings pond dam breaks near Church Rock, spilling 100 gallons of radioactive water and 1,100 tons of uranium tailings. (W.I.S.E. Ibid)

325. 1979, 17th July - WINDSCALE, U.K.

Six men contaminated by radiation when fire broke out. A spokesman for the plant said the contamination was 'very minor' but more tests were being made on the men. He added the fire was quickly put out and there was no danger to the public. Staff were evacuated and given medical checks. (Reuter, "Sydney Morning Herald", 18th July 1979)

326. 1979, 23rd July - ALDERMASTON, U.K.

Government scientist Peter Allen killed in an explosion at Aldermaston Atomic Weapons Research Station. (W.I.S.E. No 6 October 1979)

327. 1979, 25th July - MURUROA ATOLL, SOUTH PACIFIC

An explosion equivalent to an earthquake registering 6.3 on the Richter Scale was recorded on July 25th at Wellington Observatory. There have been about 25 tests undertaken by the French since 1975. ("West Australian" 9th August 1979)

328. 1979, 25th July, ONTARIO, CANADA

Plant shut near Bruce, Ontario, after 90,000 litres of heavy water leaked. (W.I.S.E. Ibid)

329. 1979, 27th July - PILGRIM 1 MASSACHUSETTS, U.S.A.

Pilgrim 1 (670 B.W.R.) reactor shut-down automatically because two valves failed to function properly when the reactor was struck by lightening. (W.I.S.E. Ibid)

330. 1979, 30th July - RIO PUERCO, NEW MEXICO, U.S.A.

Accident in uranium processing plant. Flash flood of radioactive material washed an estimated 130 kms down the usually trickling Rio Puerco River which flows past a Navajo Indian Reservation. New York Times reported 100 million gallons of water and 1,100 tonnes of uranium tailings mishap considered largest such release in U.S. Residue from plant goes into large dam; dam burst. ("A.H." Program A.B.C. Australia 30/7/1979; "N.Y. Times" 28/7/1979 )

331. 1979, July - NAGASAKI, JAPAN

Between August 1978 and 1979, there were 106 patients suffering from radiation effects from the atomic bomb at the Nagasaki Hospital for A-Bomb victims. ("Japan Times", 8th August 1979 quoted in W.I.S.E. No.1 November/December 1979)


A N.S.W. Government report on workers at Radium Hill, although not yet finalized, shows that since 1960, 598 of those who worked underground at Radium Hill over a period of two years died of cancer; showing a death rate four and a half times the Australian average. (Senator Cavanagh, Hansard, 29th August 1979, pp.378-379) Senator Guilfoyle, representing the Federal Minister for Health, (Hansard 11th October, 1979, p.216) was unable to confirm or deny this according to information she had available to her, but she was able to confirm that of the 3,000 employees, 600 had been traced; 22 who had died spent in excess of 12 months underground; 9 (40%) had died of cancer. "Nationwide" reported that the death toll is rising. Workers were contaminated with radon gas at a time when the dangers of uranium mining were internationally known. As early as 1920 radon was a known killer. Safety standard at Radium Hill were sub-standard. Host miners did not know the tremendous risk they were taking. Many miners are still not aware of the danger. None were privately informed. ("Nationwide", A.B.C. 23rd July 1979)

333. 1979, 4th August - U.K.

Five A.G.R. reactors (Advanced Gas Cooled) have been in use in the U.K. but "after series of disastrous failures of design and equipment only two are now working. The American system of letting private companies build and run A.G.R. Stations seem more risky than the British way". ("Weekend News" 4th August 1979)


Significant levels of radon have been found in houses, schools, etc., where tailings were used for land fill and building foundations. Infant death rate for Grand Junction is 50% higher than the State average due to birth defects. (Penelope Coleing, M.A.U.M.)

335. 1979, 5th August NEVADA BOMB TESTING, U.S.A.

It is reported that five movie stars have died of radioactivity from atomic bomb tests fallout in Nevada conducted in 1953. John Wayne, Susan Hayward, Dick Powell, Agnes Moorhead have died along with most of their co-stars and film crew. Children in fallout area have had eukemia at the rate of 2-1/2 times the national average. ("Sunday Telegraph", 5/8/1979; "Sunday Times", 5/8/1979)

335. 1979, 6th August - DOEL, BELGIUM

Two nuclear power plants at Doel, Belgium were closed after a cooling water pipe burst and flooded a machine room basement. (A.A.P. Reuter "Sydney Morning Herald", 7th August, 1979, Teleprinter, NDL, August 1979, "Northern Daily Leader")

337. 1979, 8th August - THE HAGUE, NETHERLANDS

The only commercial nuclear power station in the Netherlands closed after a turbine steam bellows sprang a leak. ("West Australian", 9/8/1979 )

338. 1979, 16th August - MARALINGA, SOUTH AUSTRALIA

The former British Atomic test site at Maralinga will not be considered safe until 2029 according to a report by the Australian Ionizing Radiation Advisory Council. Six drums of plutonium have been dug up and returned to Britain in order to meet International Atomic energy safety standards. ("West Australian", 16th August 1979)

339. 1979, 15th August - VIRGINIA, U.S.A.

The Virginia Electric and Power Company is being fined $15,000 by the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission for a safety violation involving a worker who voluntarily exposed himself to more than three times the permitted dose of radiation. The company has been fined a total of $112,400 for various violations in its two nuclear plants. ("Washington Post", 16th August, 1979)

340. 1979, 29th August - OLKILUOTO, FINLAND

50,000 litres of radioactive water leaked onto the floor of the reactor building causing a shutdown for six days. (W.I.S.E. Vol.2 No.2 p.18)

341. 1979, 30th August - FINLAND

Nuclear power plant shut down because of radioactive leak. (I.H.T. 5th September 1979, W.I.S.E. No.6 p.16)

342. 1979, August - CRYSTAL RIVER, FL, U.S.A.

The N.R.C. ordered the Crystal River Plant to operate at 50% capacity following a series of brief shutdowns that the company said were caused by equipment failures. ("The Australian", 28th February 1980)


Tihange Nuclear Power Plant shut down because of cracked pipes. Information did not reach the press until 20th September. ("Les Amis de la Terre" in W.I.S.E. Vol.2 No.2 p.18)

344. 1979, 3rd September, - U.S.A.

A Government study of 3,500 uranium miners found 200 to have already died of cancer against a rate of fewer than 40 deaths that could be expected among 3,500 people elsewhere. Most cases of miners afflicted with lung cancer, silicosia and fibrosis have not been compensated by the Government; the only customer for uranium at the time. Dr. Eisenbud, the head of the New York University's environmental medicine centre at Tuxedo said the risk to minors was totally avoidable. (A.A.P. - "New York Times"; "West Australian", 3/9/1970.)

345. 1979, 29th September - TUCSON, ARIZONA, U.S.A.

Governor Bruce Babbit of Arizona declared a State of emergency and sent the National Guard to clean out radioactive tritium at the plant which he claimed had been leaking recurrently. Chocolate cake made in the school across the road was found to have 56,000 picocuries per litre of radioactive tritium, almost three times the official safe standard. $300,000 worth of food was contaminated by radioactive tritium. An American atomic energy official claimed the whole emergency was the result of Governor Babbit's "greed for publicity" in related incidents. (Nucleus, Vol.2 No.1 November/December 1979 p.19)

346. 1979, September - OLKILUTO 1, FINLAND

A further 15,000 litres of radioactive water leaked at the reactor. The company withheld information from the public. (W.I.S.E. Vol.2 No.2 p.18)

347. 1979, September - LOVIISA PLANT, FINLAND

The State owned power company at Loviisa announced that cracks in the mantle inside the reactor vessel had been discovered in February 1978, but had been neglected. (EVY in W.I.S.E. Vol.2 No.2)

348. 1979, 6th October - U.S.A.

American Atomics Corporation is seeking re-organisation under Federal bankruptcy laws. (W.I.S.E. Vol. 2 No. 1 November/December 1979 from "International Herald Tribune", 10th January 1979. "Washington Post" 10th October 1979; "New York Times" 30th September 1979 and 7th October 1979)

349. 1979, 6th October - U.S.A

Police found tiny glass tubes filled with radioactive tritium in a vacant lot near the American Atomic Corporation's factory.

350. 1979, 9th October - FRANCE

France's most advanced nuclear reactor closed for an indefinite period because of a leak according to an Atomic Energy Commissioner. ("Newcastle Morning Herald" 13th October 1979 the only newspaper to report the incident)

351. 1979, 10th October - RHINGHALE REACTOR, SWEDEN,

The generator shut down following malfunction in the cooling system.

352. 1979, 13th October - WEST BERLIN, GERMANY

A nuclear power plant at Hoexter re-opened this week after a seven month closure over technical problems. It was shut down again on this day because of a faulty water pump. ("The Advertiser", 13th October 1979 p.2)

353. 1979, 15th October - FORT ST. URAIN, DENVER, CO., U.S.A.

The Fort St. Urain reactor, 22 kms from Denver was shut down after a malfunction released radioactive gas into the atmosphere. The shut down was the third in two years due to "equipment malfunction". A spokesman for the Public Service Company of Colorado which operates the plant said the shut down occurred after helium, the primary coolant, seeped into a back-up water System. ("The Australian" 16th October 1979 from United Press)

354. 1979, 24th October - TRICASTIN, FRANCE

Sidier Duez was killed by abnormal concentration of nitrogen and lack of ventilation at Tricastin nuclear power plant in France. (La Guele Overte in W.I.S.E. Vol.2 No.2 p.18)


Metropolitan Edison operator at Three Mile Island nuclear plant was fined $150,000 for accident last spring by N.R.C. The company was found guilty of 17 safety violations. (W.I.S.E. Vol.2 No.2 p.18)

356. 1979, 30th October - LUCAS HEIGHTS, AUSTRALIA

The N.S.W. Premier, Mr. Wren criticized the Federal Government for its lack of communication over a leak at Lucas Heights, Australia's only Atomic Energy Plant. The radio news item reported a radioactive leak of tritium. The General Manager of the Commission said the leak had been isolated and the parts involved would be replaced. He said nothing had escaped from the reactor. ("The Australian" 30th October 1979)

357. 1979, 31st October - AUSTRALIA

Bush walkers and children have access to a chemical dump at Australind where low level radioactive waste is stored. The waste is radium 228 with a half-life of six years and radium 226 with a half-life of 1,600 years. The dump is on private land about 200 metres from the Collie River where bush walkers often go. ("West Australian" 31st October 1979)

358. 1979, October - WINDSCALE, U.K.

In Britain, Government scientists will investigate whether a mysterious rise in the incidence of blood cancer in Northern England is due to "radioactive pollution from the nearby Windscale nuclear plant". 12 doctors diagnosed 12 cases of leukemia in one area, 10 victims have died. Scientists at Manchester University have found a marked rise in Leukemia deaths in Blackpool, Burnley, Lancaster and Preston areas surrounding Windscale with hardly any change over the rest of Britain. - "Another university team discovered levels of radioactivity in the adjoining Irish Sea hundreds of times greater than in other coastal regions". ("Daily News", 3rd October 1979)


Alarming death rates amongst uranium miners caused by microscopic particles called radon daughter. 17 have died; 45-50 have pulmonary fibrosis. Dr. Joseph Wagoner's estimates of the toll through 1978 is about 200 deaths, 160 in excess "making 160 people who needlessly died due to lung cancer because we did not accept the published data that was already there for our use in the 1950's". "The data clearly indicates the inadequacy of current standards of radiation exposure in the mines". ("Daily News" 6th June 1980)

The increase in the risk of lung cancer among Navajo uranium miners is at least 85 fold. KERR McGEE, the company involved in mining at Red Rock, along with 15 other energy companies have now converged on Crown Point. Crown Point is in danger of losing its water supply because of underground mining. What water there is contains elevated concentrations of radium, arsenic and nitrate. Navajo Indians have been tricked into signing contracts handing over their land to oil companies. (NS October, 1979 p.81)

360. 1979, 2nd November, OHU 1, WEST GERMANY

Ohu 1 nuclear reactor near Landshut was shut down for two days because of leaks. W.I.S.E. Vol.2 No.2 p.18)

361. 1979, 4th November - TAKAHANA 11, JAPAN

'Simple' mistakes caused 80 tonnes of radioactive water to escape from the 260 tonne primary cooling system at the Takahama 11 reactor near Fukui. The accident is considered to be Japan's worst ever nuclear accident. A spokesman said defects in the temperature monitoring piping or the accidental removal of a spigot could have caused the overflow. A welded cap on one of the four monitoring pipes fell from the reserve outlet, causing coolant water to gush out. "The accident was a big surprise to us", said the spokesperson. The reactor had to be shut down for one month. ("The Australian" 5th November 1979, "West Australian" 5th November 1979)

362. 1979, 5th November - SWITZERLAND

An explosion at Switzerland's newest and biggest nuclear power station wrecked a 100 metre high pylon. The pylon fell on an electric transformer station at Goesgen cutting power to surrounding arena. The station was due to be opened later in the month. ("West Australian", 5th November 1979)

363. 1979, 6th November - COPENHURST, U.K.

Uranium gas accidentally released from a test rig at Copenhurst enrichment plant. (W.I.S.E. Ibid)

364. 1979, 10th November - BUGEY, FRANCE

Chief solderer died at Bugey nuclear power plant in steam generator room filled with nitrogen. He had not been warned and was not wearing a mask. ("La Guenle Dverte" in W.I.S.E. Vol.2 No.2 p.18)

365. 1979, 12th November - MICHIGAN, U.S.A.

The U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission has proposed a fine of $402,750, the largest in its history, for a Michigan power company which forgot to close the valve on a pipe leading from a reactor containment building. The containment building is intended to prevent the release of big amounts of radioactivity in the event of a serious accident. If such an accident had occurred at the plant between April, 1978 and September 1979 the radioactivity would have just poured out of the pipe. Penalty period for the plant was 18 months (compared to eleven months penalty at Three Mile Island). ("West Australian", 12/11/1979)

366. 1979, 15th November - JAPAN

The fitting of a wrong plug in an inspection hole has caused a big quantity of water contaminated by radioactive matter to leak inside a reactor at a power plant in Western Japan. ("West Australian", 15th November 1979)

367. 1979, November - IDAHO FALLS, IDAHO, U.S.A.

The Lewiston Morning Tribunal, an Idaho newspaper, quoted an unpublished Federal report made in 1974 as saying: parts of a water supply beneath a U.S. Energy Department laboratory near Idaho Falls had been contaminated by radioactive waste. It was also claimed that big amounts of hexavelant chromium - a non-radioactive cancer-causing agent - had been released into the Snake River aquifer through injection wells. The aquifer covers 290 kms and is used for human consumption and irrigation. Between 1951 and 1970 liquid waste containing 45 million kgs of chemicals had been discharged into the ground above the aquifer. (A.A.P. - A.P. "West Australian", 12th November 1979)

368. 1979 November - FFTF, HANFORD, WA., U.S.A.

Faulty fuel rods built by Kerr MaGee are scheduled for use at the Fast Flux Test Facility (FFTF) at Hanford, Washington. The Environmental Policy Institute in Washington, D.C. has uncovered evidence that the FFTF:

1. Has not adequately met the quality assurance criteria for the reactor;

2. Has not sufficiently answered inquiries by the Advisory Committee on Reactor Safeguards of the Nuclear Regulatory Commission about containment;

3. Has no evacuation plan; and

4. That some radioactive materials will continuously leak during the expected 20 years of operating life.

Public documents as well as the transcripts SILKWOOD v KERR McGEE civil suit, attest fuel pellets not properly manufactured and abuses by quality assurance employees were common. Defects in welds, quality assurance irregularities, improper record keeping and shipping practices by KERR McGEE employees confirmed. EPI asserts that to begin operation of the FFTF would pose a serious risk to the inhabitants of the Pacific Northwest, particularly the 10,000 residents of the Tri-Cities area. (W.I.S.E. November/December 1979)

369. 1979, - THREE MILE ISLAND 2, U.S.A.

At the Three Mile Island II reactor, radiation monitors in vent stacks, where most of the radiation escaped, went off the scale the morning of the accident. Nuclear Regulatory Commission officials said that the monitors located in the vent stack and the passages leading to the stack were never contemplated for use in measuring releases of the Three Mile Island variety, "so we don't really know what went up there..." W.I.S.E. November/December 1979; SECO newsletter). According to a newly-released report, as much as 20% of the core of the Three Mile Island nuclear power plant melted in the 1979 accident. ("The Age" 12/4/85)

370. 1979, November - U.S.A.

Babcock and Wilcox, builders of the Crystal River and Three Mile Island plants made a $1.1 million out-of-court settlement in addition to providing two new cooling pumps after the Florida Power Company filed a suit charging the firm with installing equipment "not fit for the production of nuclear energy". ("The Australian" 28/2/1980).

Human error evidently played a large part in the Three Mile Island accident. The N.R.C. conducted a survey that revealed that 20 of the 107 senior operators at U.S. nuclear plants were not licensed. Ten others were licensed at the wrong plants. Of all nuclear operators at 66 nuclear reactors, 53 had failed written examinations. 448 scored low enough to be required to attend special lectures to improve their abilities. The N.R.C. has called for tougher training. It was suggested one method for improvement would be to raise the passing grade on the exam from the present requirement of 70% to 80%.(Critical Mass Journal W.I.S.E. Vol.2 No.2 p.8)

371. 1979, November - WINDSCALE, U.K.

The widow of a Windscale worker whose husband died of leukemia at the age of 36 was awarded 67,000 pounds sterling by the Carlisle Crown Court. This was the first case of its type. On two previous occasions, British Nuclear Fuels Ltd. (BNFL) settled out of court while refusing to accept liability. All three cases were started by the General and Municipal Workers, which has two more cases pending against BNFL.(W.I.S.E. Op.Cit. p.14)

372. 1979, 11th December - HANFORD, WASHINGTON, U.S.A.

Two former employees at Hanford at U.S. Senate hearings that the Energy Department and Hanford covered up reports of leaking underground nuclear waste at the Hanford site. Stephen Stalos and Allen Wegle resigned from their jobs at Hanford because of nuclear safety management technique. They said some leaks continue undetected while others are detected but not labelled as leaks by the management. In further testimony, it was stated that between 1956 and 1976 at least 20 out of the 150 storage tanks leaked over 50,000 gallons of liquid waste into the soil. (W.I.S.E. Ibid)

373. 1979, 29th December - NEW YORK, U.S.A.

A couple, convinced that their stillborn baby was killed by radiation from Three Mile Island nuclear plant, filed for more than $20,000 compensatory and punitive damages from Metropolitan Edison, the operator of the plant. The woman was four months pregnant at the time of Three Mile Island accident. ("West Australian", 29th December 1979)

374. 1979, 30th December - U.K.

Britain's biggest earthquake for 50 years shook reactors at Windscale, Chapel Cross, Huntereton, Cumbria and at Torneua near Dunbar, Heycham and Hartlepool where reactors are being built. Few of the reactors have been designed to withstand earthquakes. (Newspaper article by Geoffrey Lean and Brian Wilson, 30th December 1979, in International Nuclear News Service p.8)

375. 1979, December - PALISADES, MICHIGAN, U.S.A.

The Nuclear Regulatory Commission fined Michigan's Palisades nuclear power plant $45,000 for safety violations which caused radioactive leakage over an 18 month period.

375. 1979 - LANCASHIRE, U.K.

Studies by Manchester University show cases of Myeloid lukemia has doubled between the late 1960's and early 1970's. No chemical cause found but cause linked with increased radioactive pollution monitored off the North-West coast. Cover-up is suspected because:

-Public secrecy after radioactive releases when reactors were used for bomb production;

-Unexplained failure to publish leukemia statistics since 1970.

These results are in line with studies in the U.S.A. where a two to three times increase in cancer (particularly leukemia) can be found in the vicinity of nuclear plants. Despite this the British Government is relaxing control on dumping of low level wastes, preparing to raise objections to high level waste dumping and proposing to raise allowable radiation exposure levels to workers and the public in line with recommendations of the International Commission on Radiological Protection. (W.I.S.E. November/December 1979)

377. Late 1979 - CRYSTAL RIVER, U.S.A.

Radioactive elements exceeding permissable units were accidentally transferred to a holding at Crystal River. ("The Australian", 28/2/1980)

378. 1979 - CANADA

A French Government/Rothchild owned multi-national corporation aptly named Amok has been given full permission by the Saskatchewan Government to develop one of the richest known uranium deposits near Carawell Lake. The rights of the Dene Indians who have treaty rights to the land have been ignored. The Government has refused to negotiate with them. (W.I.S.E. No.4 p.9)

379. 1979 - IRISH SEA

The second annual survey of radioactive discharges by the Department of the Environment noted a marked increase in discharges of Plutonium 241 during 1979. Levels of Strontium discharges also doubled last year. In 1978, 11 tonnes of uranium were dumped into the sea. (W.I.S.E. Op.Cit. p.14)

380. 1964-1979 - BELOYARSK-1 U.S.S.R.

Frequent destruction of fuel assemblies at Beloyarsk-1 (108 MS). Operating staff are irradiated during repairs to the core. ("Nucleonics Week" (31/5/90); WISE-334 22/6/90 ) .

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