September 21, 2017 / 1:45 PM / a year ago

UPDATE 1-French nuclear watchdog flags low risk incident at Chooz 2 reactor

PARIS, Sept 21 (Reuters) - France’s nuclear regulator said on Thursday that an auxiliary power generator at EDF’s Chooz 2 reactor had unexpectedly shut down twice in the past month.

The regulator, ASN, rated the shutdowns as level 1 incidents on the international nuclear and radiological event scale (INES).

Level 1 is the lowest risk on a scale of 1 to 7 in INES standards.

The 1,500 megawatt reactor, currently offline for refuelling and maintenance, is one of 12 reactors on which EDF has submitted a review to the regulator concerning documentation and components.

The review is part of an ongoing investigation into irregularities and the falsification of manufacturing documents.

The reactor is scheduled to resume production on Oct. 12.

ASN said that state-controlled utility EDF, which operates France’s fleet of 58 reactors, notified it on Aug. 29 that a power generator had unexpectedly shut down.

The same event happened again on Sept. 1, it said.

ASN said that during both incidents the external power source could not be put back into service within the prescribed period required by general operating rules.

The regulator said it was analysing the incident together with its technical arm IRSN, while the reactor remained offline.

ASN did not say whether the incident would affect the reactor’s restart date. (Reporting by Bate Felix; Editing by Susan Fenton)

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