EDF detects another anomaly on its oldest nuclear reactors

PARIS Thu Feb 17, 2011 11:30am EST

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PARIS (Reuters) - France's EDF has detected for the second time in less than a week an anomaly on its back-up diesel generators in 8 of its 19 nuclear power plants, with no impact on operations and safety, it said on Thursday.

EDF said it had started repairs last week and that they could be done whilst reactors were in action.

The French Nuclear Safety Authority (ASN) ranked the anomaly at level 1 of the international nuclear event scale that goes from zero to 7 on seven reactors and at level 2 for 1 reactor.

The anomaly was detected in some of EDF's oldest plants: Blayais, Bugey, Chinon, Cruas, Dampierre, Gravelines and Saint-Laurent and Tricastin.

"The anomaly is caused by premature wear," EDF said in a statement. "It is of no consequence to the operation and safety of the facilities in question." Each nuclear power unit has three back-up diesel generators.

Last week EDF said it has detected a technical flaw in 34 of its 58 nuclear reactors that could have an impact on safety.

(Reporting by Muriel Boselli and Marie Maitre)

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