NRC steps up oversight at Exelon's Oyster Creek nuke plant

The Nuclear Regulatory Commission will step up oversight of Exelon’s Oyster Creek plant in Ocean County, N.J., following a 2016 inspection that found deficient maintenance work on a safety-related relief valve.

The inspection found a problem with one of the plant’s electromatic relief valves, which are used to depressurize the reactor during a pipe break. Oyster Creek has five such valves. In the NRC’s report, it classified its finding as being of “low to moderate safety significance.”

“These valves serve a key safety function and therefore it is important that they be available to help mitigate severe accidents at the plant,” said NRC Region I administrator Dan Dorman. “We will conduct a supplemental inspection at Oyster Creek to ensure the underlying problems that led to this issue have been appropriately addressed.” 

Exelon plans to shut down the 636-megawatt reactor in 2019.