Thursday, May 2, 2013

Georgia Power's comments on the Plant Bowen blast

-Media release: An incident occurred at Georgia Power's Plant Bowen facility in Cartersville, mid-afternoon on Thursday, April 4. At that time, Unit 2 was beginning a maintenance outage and experienced an explosion.
-All employees, including full-time and contractors, were accounted for and no serious injuries were reported. Units 1 and 2 at Plant Bowen are currently offline and will remain so until a full assessment of the damage can be completed. Units 3 and 4 have been returned to service.
-Plant Bowen has historically had a strong safety performance, including a three-year period from 2007 to 2010 with no recordable safety incidents. The plant is one of the most productive of its kind in the nation, and has been a consistent industry leader when it comes to operational excellence.
-The explosion at Bowen Unit 2 resulted in significant damage to the Unit 2 generator, Unit 1 and 2 control room and surrounding areas, as well as the plant's switchyard. The extent of the damage sustained by Unit 1 is unknown at this time.
-An internal investigation into the April 4 explosion at Plant Bowen's Unit 2 indicates that the explosion was the result of a combustible mixture of hydrogen and air inside the generator. The explosion was not the result of equipment failure.
-Current audit and oversight roles are being evaluated, and after considering these analyses, we will work together with employees to make further enhancements to improve our overall commitment to safety. Lessons learned from the various assessments will be incorporated into the operations at other plants across the Southern Company fleet.
-This incident will not impact Georgia Power's ability to meet customer demand. Georgia Power has more than sufficient generating capacity through its diverse fleet of coal, natural gas, nuclear and renewable sources. Electricity generated at Plant Bowen, and all of our plants, goes directly onto the grid, and is distributed across the state to our 2.4 million customers."

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