The nuclear safety Authority (ASN) is concerned that the construction of the EPR nuclear reactor of Flamanville (Manche) has other problems to be ” very difficult “, in addition to the welds, said Thursday, October 18, the head of the pole EPR of the ASN of Normandy. “I do not hide from you that (…) one is entitled to imagine that there will actually may be more difficulties elsewhere. It is looking at if the welds will remain, or not, the only very difficult subject, ” of this project, said Eric Zelnio at a meeting of the local information commission (CLI) on the nuclear site of Flamanville.

This is the reason why the ASN “is about to make EDF a request to extend to other materials on the reactor,” the journal of quality required to address the problem of welds. The policeman of the nuclear also asked the group to “work on the kinetics of such failures, known to some for a few years,” continued Mr. Zelnio. “One has the feeling that there has been a significant gap in time between the detection, response, and information “, added the head of the pole, regretting also that “the fact that certain operations have not been suspended” in the wake of these discoveries.

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Four welds repaired on 33

About the welding problems revealed in the beginning of the year, EDF announced on Thursday have repaired four on at least 33 it must be resumed. For eight or ten others, the ASN is still waiting to have the proof that they do not need to be repaired. EDF, owned approximately 84 % by the State, announced in July an additional delay of one year and a cost overrun of € 400 million related to the welds, with the budget of the EPR at 10.9 billion, more than triple the original budget.

EDF has repeated that the EPR would start at the end 2019 (against 2012, which was initially planned), and indicated that the fuel would be delivered in spring 2019 ” in Flamanville. “400 million, it is the amount of the extension announced by the government to fund its health plan. It is $ 400 million less to fund long-term care Facility or MRI. Because who is going to pay in the end, our taxes, ” responded Guy Vatel, the Association for the control of radioactivity in the West (ACRO), at this meeting.

Launched in 2007, the shipyard employs 4 800 people (of which 900 come from EDF and the other sub-contractors), said the company. Originally designed as a showcase for the export, the construction site of the reactor, which must be the most powerful of France, has experienced multiple setbacks.

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