The Korea Herald


Gov't inspects nuke power plants after record earthquake

By 임정요

Published : Sept. 13, 2016 - 14:11

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South Korean authorities inspected nuclear power plants across the country Tuesday to check possible damage after a powerful magnitude-5.8 earthquake hit the southern part of the country, officials said.

The Ministry of Science, ICT and Future Planning said it has formed an emergency task force to inspect the plants near the earthquake's epicenter in the historic city of Gyeongju and other plants in the adjacent areas, as well as telecommunication facilities.

On Monday evening, the temblor, the strongest to hit the Korean Peninsula to date, was detected in an area located some 9 kilometers south of Gyeongju, about 400 km southeast of Seoul, preceded by a 5.1-magnitude tremor.

The Nuclear Safety and Security Commission also said it has set up an emergency team to look into any possible damage at the nuclear power plants and nuclear waste disposal sites.

Four Wolseong reactors were temporarily stopped to be checked, but it was a precautionary measure, according to the officials. The power plants were built to withstand an earthquake with a magnitude ranging between 6.5 and 7, they said.

The country operates 23 nuclear reactors that generate about 30 percent of its total electricity supply. (Yonhap)