BNFL in new row over plutonium shipment
Thursday 30 September 1999
The claims come two weeks after The Independent revealed that checks at the company's Sellafield plant in Cumbria had been falsified. At the time, BNFL insisted that the falsification involved only fuel under production in the UK - not the consignment due to dock in Japan today.
However, an investigation into that fuel, earmarked for the Takahama 4 reactor in Fukui prefecture, has shown that one rogue set of tests might have allowed imperfect mixed plutonium and uranium oxide (MOX) pellets through the safety net. Information supplied by BNFL to the Kansai Electric Power Company, which runs Takahama 4, also shows the British company knew that data had been falsified as early as 20 August, but did not tell Mitsubishi, Kansai's contractor, until 9 September. The Independent had been making inquiries around this date and challenged BNFL on the 10th. Kansai was not told until the 13th, the day before the news broke.
Suggestions that one batch of pellets on board the Pacific Pintail, which is carrying the BNFL MOX, might be suspect follow an examination of data by Professor Hidiyuki Koyama, of Osaka Prefectural University, on behalf of anti-nuclear campaigners. It relates to tests on a batch of 200 pellets, numbered P824, in which 68 bore exactly the same microscopic measurements as their corresponding numbers in the previous batch. The suspicion is that the results were simply copied to save time.
BNFL said Kansai and the Agency of National Resources and Energy in Japan accepted its figures and were happy that the fuel on board Pintail had not been subjected to falsified tests.
International Women's Day 2014: The shocking statistics that show why it is still so important
Malaysia Airlines: Search for true identity of passengers with stolen passports launched as terrorism concern grows
Singapore sting: Sky-high prices are pushing locals to the edge of affordability
International Women’s Day: 'When a man gives his opinion, he's a man. When a woman gives her opinion, she's a bitch' - feminist quotes from female icons to inspire you
Dead woman's body found sitting in a car after six years after direct debits ran $54,000 bank account dry
Britain's top vet sparks controversy with call for ban on slashing animals' throats in 'ritual' slaughters for halal and kosher meat products
Ukraine crisis: Russia dismisses '3am ultimatum' as 'total nonsense'
If you're horrified by a flame-roasted dog, you should be shocked at a hog roast
Poor 'live like animals' says Boris's privately educated sister after going on 'poverty safari'
White people become less racist just by moving to more diverse areas, study finds
Exclusive: Impact of immigrants on British workers ‘negligible’
- 1 International Women's Day 2014: The shocking statistics that show why it is still so important
- 2 Orgasm machine to deliver climax at the push of a button
- 3 Dear 'The Sun', breast cancer isn't sexy
- 4 Singapore sting: Sky-high prices are pushing locals to the edge of affordability
- 5 Liam Neeson turned down James Bond role because late wife Natasha Richardson said she wouldn't marry him if he took it
£12000 per annum: Inspiring Interns: A small but growing chain of boutique hot...
£12000 per annum: Inspiring Interns: The company works with Tier 1 FTSE 100 Ba...
£45 - 60k Per Annum: Charter Selection: Highly profitable leisure brand, marke...
£30000 - £50000 per annum + Highly Competitive Salary: Austen Lloyd: Residenti...