Freon Leak in Reactor Building Results in 'Alert' Declaration at Susquehanna Nuclear Plant

Aug 10, 2010, 11:21 ET from PPL Susquehanna

BERWICK, Pa., Aug. 10 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- Workers at PPL's Susquehanna nuclear power plant in Luzerne County, Pa., near Berwick are taking actions to stop a leak of Freon vapor from a chiller system in the Unit 1 reactor building.

Because Freon is leaking in an area that contains plant safety systems, PPL Susquehanna declared an "alert" at 9:22 a.m. EDT. An alert is the second lowest of the four emergency classifications established by the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission for nuclear power plants.

"Plant employees are investigating the cause of the leak while focusing on stopping the leak and getting the Freon out of that area of the reactor building through the plant's ventilation system," said Joseph J. Scopelliti, community relations manager for the Susquehanna plant.

"There have been no injuries. All plant workers have been safely accounted for," Scopelliti said.

Freon is a refrigerant used for cooling. The affected chiller system provides cooling for the Unit 1 reactor building. The reactor building has a redundant system to provide cooling.

Unit 1 continues to operate at full power.

PPL has activated its Joint Information Center at the East Mountain Business Center just off Route 115, south of Wilkes-Barre, Pa. The phone number is 1-866-832-4474.

The Susquehanna plant, located about seven miles north of Berwick, is owned jointly by PPL Susquehanna LLC and Allegheny Electric Cooperative Inc. and is operated by PPL Susquehanna.

PPL Susquehanna is one of PPL Corporation's generating facilities. Headquartered in Allentown, Pa., PPL Corporation (NYSE: PPL) controls or owns nearly 12,000 megawatts of generating capacity in the United States, sells energy in key U.S. markets and delivers electricity to about 4 million customers in Pennsylvania and the United Kingdom. More information is available at

Note to Editors: A Susquehanna Nuclear Energy Guide is available on the PPL media Web site at The guide provides specific plant and general nuclear energy information.

SOURCE PPL Susquehanna