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Published: Sunday, 7/15/2012

Davis-Besse meeting set for Aug. 9


Editor's Note: This version corrects the date of the meeting as Thursday, Aug. 9, 2012 at 6:30 p.m.

OAK HARBOR -- FirstEnergy Corp. has scheduled a public meeting Aug. 9 at 6:30 p.m. to present findings from its study of cracks found last year in the shield building at the Davis-Besse nuclear power station.

FirstEnergy is applying for a 20-year renewal of Davis-Besse's license, which expires in 2017. Those who oppose the relicensing have flagged the October discovery of hairline cracks in the outer concrete shield as an issue of concern.

" … Inspections of the station's shield building revealed that the tight cracks in the building's wall discovered during the fall 2011 reactor head replacement outage do not appear to have grown, nor were any new cracks identified," a statement issued by the company said.

FirstEnergy blamed the cracks -- first observed when a hole was cut through the building that houses its nuclear reactor for access to replace the reactor's cover -- on moisture penetration and freezing during the blizzard of 1978.

The utility pledged to develop a monitoring program and to coat the concrete structure with a weatherproofing material that was not applied when the plant was built during the mid-1970s.

In addition to FirstEnergy's discussion of the root causes of the cracking and any upcoming steps, the Nuclear Regulatory Commission will provide an overview of license renewal inspection activities.

The meeting is to take place at Oak Harbor High School, 11661 W. State Rt. 163.

The plant is 35 miles east of Toledo.

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