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If Wind Exceeds 75 MPH, SC Officials Say They'll Shut Down Nuclear Plant

SCE&G utility officials are monitoring Hurricane Florence closely in case the winds are strong enough to warrant the shutdown of the Virgil C. Summer nuclear power plant in Fairfield County.

The plant is 135 miles inland but officials say because it is 400 feet above sea level, flooding risks are minimized. Officials also say wind speeds could have more of an effect on the nuclear power plant than heavy rains. As a precaution, the plant’s reactor will be shut down at least two hours prior to winds exceeding 75 miles per hour.

Officials say the plant has numerous backup systems and personnel to respond to emergencies. Safety measures at V.C. Summer and other nuclear power plants around the country were reinforced and upgraded following the 2011 earthquake and tsunami that heavily damaged the Fukushima Nuclear Plant in Japan.