BUCHANAN—Indian Point Nuclear Power Plants have begun “Abnormal Operating Procedures,” said Jim Steets, an Entergy spokesman, after Tuesday afternoon's 5.8 magnitude earthquake. Abnormal Operating Procedures, or AOP, means that the plant is being inspected for damage, although none has yet been found.
“If there was a reason for people to protect themselves the sirens would go off,” Steets said.
The quake's epicenter was in Virginia, but could be felt as far north as northern Westchester, according to some reports.
Jerry Nappi, another spokesman for Indian Point Nuclear Power Plants, said, “Sirens are not necessarily an indication to evacuation, but to turn on your TVs and your radios and look for further instructions.” Nappi also said that “In the control room, the seismic monitors didn’t register to a level that would need to shut down the plant.”
Steets confirmed that the Indian Point plants were operating at full power, and Con Edison had indicated to them that the grid was stable. According to Nappi, the Indian Point Energy Center has a number of seismic protections in place, including for spent fuel pools.
The plants are designed to withstand at least a 6.0 magnitude earthquake, but plant officials feel they are able to handle a much larger jolt.