Open

Coming up

Don't miss

Replay


LATEST SHOWS

AFRICA NEWS

A landslide victory for the 'invisible candidate' in Algeria's Presidential polls

Read more

THE WORLD THIS WEEK

The World This Week - 18 April 2014

Read more

THE WORLD THIS WEEK

The World This Week - 18 April 2014 (part 2)

Read more

MEDIAWATCH

Presidential adviser resigns over "shoe-shine scandal"

Read more

#THE 51%

Breaking stereotypes

Read more

#TECH 24

Galaxy S5 v. HTC One (M8): Which is the right one for you?

Read more

FRANCE IN FOCUS

New PM Manuel Valls outlines priorities

Read more

FASHION

Jean-Marc Loubier, bags and shoes.

Read more

ENCORE!

Hip-hop musician Beat Assailant on mixing the sounds of the city

Read more

  • French journalist tells of release from captivity in Syria

    Read more

  • South Korea ferry captain defends decision to delay evacuation

    Read more

  • Scores killed in South Sudan cattle raid

    Read more

  • PSG clinch fourth League Cup title after beating Lyon

    Read more

  • Le Pen’s National Front fail to woo Britain’s Eurosceptics

    Read more

  • In pictures: French kite festival takes flight

    Read more

  • VIDEO: Anti-Semitic leaflets in Eastern Ukraine condemned

    Read more

  • In pictures: Good Friday celebrated across the globe

    Read more

  • Bouteflika, the ghost president

    Read more

  • Does Valls’ upcoming Vatican trip violate French secularism?

    Read more

  • Ukraine separatists say ‘not bound’ by Geneva deal

    Read more

  • Abel Ferrara’s hotly awaited DSK film to premiere on web

    Read more

  • Obama signs bill to block controversial Iran diplomat from UN post

    Read more

  • Ukraine: ‘One bloody incident could scupper Geneva deal’

    Read more

  • Astronomers discover Earth-like planet that could support life

    Read more

  • Indian election: Votes for sale

    Read more

  • World honours Garcia Marquez’s magical literary legacy

    Read more

  • In pictures: Iranian woman pardons son’s killer at the gallows

    Read more

  • Algeria's ailing Bouteflika clinches fourth term amid fraud claims

    Read more

  • Top Hollande adviser resigns over conflict of interest accusation

    Read more

  • West African Ebola outbreak caused by new strain of virus

    Read more

France

Two injured by steam blast at Fessenheim nuclear plant

©

Video by Nicolas Germain

Text by News Wires

Latest update : 2012-09-06

French power supplier EDF said Wednesday that two people were slightly burned by a blast of oxygenated steam at a nuclear plant in eastern France's Fessenheim region. The local prefecture denied earlier reports of a fire at the plant.

AP - A steam blast at France’s oldest nuclear plant Wednesday left two workers with slight hand burns and revived calls to reduce the country’s heavy reliance on nuclear power.

Nuclear safety authorities said there was no threat of radioactive leaks and that the incident at the Fessenheim plant in eastern France appeared minor. It touched a nerve, however, because anti-nuclear activists have long urged the closure of the plant. Those calls have mounted since the disaster at Japan’s Fukushima Dai-ichi nuclear plant last year.

Utility giant Electricite de France, which operates the plant, denied initial reports of a fire. EDF said in a statement that the incident occurred during routine maintenance and that smoke was released. It said two workers suffered slight burns on their hands after oxygenated water escaped during maintenance, and the workers received immediate medical treatment. All nine workers at the site were examined, it said.

France relies on nuclear energy more than any other nation, getting about ¾ of its electricity from atomic reactors scattered around the country.

Workers were treating materials in an annex of the plant, not the building that houses the reactor, when the incident occurred, said Thierry Charles, deputy director of the Institute for Radioactive Protection and Nuclear Security. He said they were preparing a chemical solution for cleaning purposes, and there was an unexpected chemical reaction that resulted in a burst of oxygenated water escaping.

“It has nothing to do with radioactivity,” he said, noting that oxygenated water is widely used for industrial purposes. He said at this stage he sees “no risks” resulting from the incident.

Noel Mamere, a parliament member from the environmental party and a vocal critic of nuclear energy, told BFM television that this incident is a reminder that “we must leave nuclear energy progressively” and turn to other, more renewable forms of energy.

The environment minister, Delphine Batho, said there was no immediate safety risk but ordered EDF and nuclear safety authorities to study what happened and submit a report to the government.

 

Date created : 2012-09-05

  • FRANCE

    Is France set to backtrack on its nuclear promises?

    Read more

Comments

COMMENT(S)