Vogtle AP1000 reactor pressure vessel found seemingly abandoned in Savannah Port

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Vogtle train 1 1.23.2013
The “Schnabel” railroad car designed by Westinghouse, which features many wheels to distribute the weight of its payload, now rests outside on the tracks outside of a port area, visible from a nearby public sidewalk.

Last week, a special railroad car carrying a 300-ton reactor vessel for the Vogtle reactor construction project experienced problems and dumped the massive pressure vessel on the ground.  Now, an attempt to move the pressure vessel by rail was aborted after the shipment traveled less than a mile before returning to be stored at the Port of Savannah.

Joey Ledf­ord, a spokesman for the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission, said that engineers detected movement on the platform with the reactor vessel was remounted.

“We were told they had gotten just a quarter of a mile, never going more than 2 mph, with people walking along it the whole time,” he said.

After stopping the train and moving the reactor pressure vessel off-center in order for engineers to better access the problem of the alignment of the platform, it slowly made its way back to the Port of Savannah.  It is unknown if the railroad car can be repaired and used, or if it may break down again in a even less accessible location.

A Georgia Power spokesman was unsure when the unit will be moved again and said there is no date yet for its arrival on-site at this point.

Source: The Aiken Leader

Source: Alliance for Nuclear Accountability

Source: Augusta Chronicle

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