Hurricane Sandy threatens operations at MD nuclear power plants
Nuclear power plants throughout Maryland are operating under emergency procedures with only essential personnel on duty. As late as Monday evening no plants had been forced to close, but workers are standing by to shut down operations if conditions pass safe standards. All plants are designed to withstand hurricanes and other disasters, however if winds or floods reach certain levels safety officials are prepared to take them offline.
The Calvert Cliffs Nuclear Power Plant in Lusby, MD is fully operational and can power up to 1 million homes until winds reach speeds of 75 mph or water levels rise to 11 feet above normal. Operating nuclear power plants can become difficult under extreme conditions, especially when staff levels have been cut to emergency levels.