Saturday, July 19, 2008

Report doesn't urge guards at nuclear plants' entrances

Federal regulators, who have done much to beef up security at commercial nuclear power plants in the last seven years, are stopping short of requiring armed guards at the front door.

That decision should be left to plant owners, according to a 548-page U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission document that recommends several new security enhancements and would make permanent policies implemented in the aftermath of the 9/11 attacks.

Among the new requirements are policies intended to protect against cyber, or computer, assaults, and aircraft attacks.

Those recommendations await the approval of the commissioners of the NRC.

The refusal to require guards at plant entrances disappointed the Harrisburg-area watchdog group Three Mile Island Alert, which filed the petition asking for the requirement nearly seven years ago.

"This regulator doesn't have the courage to stand up to the industry and issue a directive," said Scott Portzline, a security consultant to TMI-Alert, and main author of the petition.

The Patriot News

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