The Yangjiang Nuclear Power Station in China's Guangdong province was shut down twice in one month due to its water filers being blocked by masses of small shrimp, as per reports.
According to reports, big shoals of the tiny acetes – krill-like shrimp that are just a few centimeters long – flooded the seawater diversion channel and circulating water pumping stations of the Yangjiang Nuclear Power Station in Guangdong on March 24.
They crippled the water pumping stations and caused one of the nuclear plant’s six power-generating units to go into automatic safe shutdown, while the other five units ran at 80 per cent of capacity. The unit that shut down was powered up again the next day after station staff cleared the acetes and cleaned the filters, the National Nuclear Safety Administration mentioned in their statement.
Later on March 25, large shoals of acetes again found their way into the pumping stations and causing four power-generating units to shut down automatically. The station shut off the other two units for safety reasons, the reports stated.
After investigating the matter the incident on March 25 was rated a Level 1 on the International Nuclear and Radiological Event Scale, meaning it was an “anomaly” that had no safety or health consequences. Only two nuclear events have been rated at the top of the scale as Level 7 “major accidents” – the Chernobyl disaster in 1986 and Japan Fukushima in 2011.