Dominion Nuclear Plant in Virginia Can Return to Use, NRC Says

Dominion Resources Inc.’s North Anna nuclear plant in Virginia, shut by an Aug. 23 earthquake, is ready to resume operations, the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission said.

North Anna’s two reactors, located about 11 miles (18 kilometers) from the earthquake’s epicenter, stopped operating automatically during the temblor. Ground movement from the 5.8- magnitude earthquake exceeded the plant’s design limits.

“We’re satisfied the plant meets our requirements to restart safely, and we’ll monitor Dominion’s ongoing tests and inspections during startup of both reactors,” Eric Leeds, director of the NRC’s Office of Nuclear Reactor Regulation, said in a statement today.

Dominion spokesman Jim Norvelle said in an e-mail that the company was preparing a comment.

Dominion, the Richmond-based owner of Virginia’s largest utility, has said repeatedly that the quake didn’t cause significant damage to the 33-year-old plant, which can generate electricity for about 450,000 homes. The company has spent about $21 million on examinations and analysis since the event, the company said in an Oct. 21 statement.

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To contact the editor responsible for this story: Larry Liebert at

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