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Monday, September 12, 2011

ASN release - Marcoule event closed

Here is the most recent release from Autorite de Surete Nucleare, ASN which translates as the Nuclear Safety Authority of France:


End of the event in Centraco (Gard) : press release #2

Paris, September 12 2011
Information notice

The event that occurred this morning in Centraco, nuclear installation located near Marcoule site (Gard) is considered as closed.

The explosion of a furnace dedicated for the melting of the metallic radioactive waste triggered a fire that ended at 13h00 (11.00 UTC)

The building where the explosion occurred was not damaged. Injured people do not suffer from any radiological contamination and all measures conducted by the licensee outside of the building have shown no trace of radioactive contamination.

One worker died and 4 others have sustained injuries, one of whom suffered deep burns.

This event does not involve any radiological issue and no protective actions was required for the population.

ASN, the French Nuclear Safety Authority, has suspended its emergency organization; ASN is still in permanent contact with the prefecture of Gard and the licensee Socodei. ASN will conduct dedicated inspections in liaison with Labour inspection in order to analyse the reasons of the accident.

Centraco is owned by SOCODEI. The installation is dedicated to the treatment and conditioning of low level radioactive waste, either by melting of metallic waste or by incineration of incinerable waste.


This statement is clearly intended to "close out" the event. It appears that no radiological controls issues exist outside the actual furnace building, and any inside would be limited to what amounts to a controlled area anyway and thus would not necessarily require notification or detailing. Considering the wide press this event got all over the world, quickly, but briefly, I will keep an eye out for further details and post them if conditions warrant.

2:55 PM Eastern Monday September 12, 2011

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