Kalpakkam radiation level is under permissible limit claims DAE

Kalpakkam radiation level is under permissible limit claims DAE
Department of Atomic Energy (DAE) on Saturday asserted that its Kalpakkam (Madras) Atomic Power Station (MAPS) in Tamil Nadu has several safety features on par with any other nuclear plant in the world with radiation levels inside the plant have never gone beyond the permissible limit at any point of time. DAE statement came amid media reports stating that an officer in MAPS died due to radiation in the plant.

MAPS, which is located at 80 km from south of Chennai, is of TYPE Nuclear Power Plant with a design capacity of 440 MW.  It has two units. The first unit was commissioned in 1984 and the last in 1986.  It is operated by Nuclear Power Corporation of India Limited (NPCIL), under the administrative of DAE.

"The radiation levels inside the plant have never gone beyond the permissible limit at any point of time. The radiation protection programme of the station is reviewed by Atomic Energy Regulatory Board (AERB) in its regular inspections, besides periodic corporate reviews", DAE said.

Stating that studies were conducted on effects of radiation on health have concluded that the employees working in nuclear power stations are not prone to any higher rate of occurrence of disease, particularly cancer, than the general public, it said that the latest such study was conducted by Government Arignar Anna Memorial Cancer Hospital and Research Centre, which confirmed that there is no significant evidence of cancer prevalence or any other disease among MAPS employees on account of radiation.

Claiming that the officer in MAPS died due to cardiac arrest, DAE said the management has been very transparent both to employees and public as far as radiation information is concerned and there has never been any attempt to withhold any information from plant personnel on the existing radiation fields in the reactor building.

DAE said that the performance of the MAPS station has been very good over the years and station has recorded the highest electricity generation in the last fiscal year.

The station has also successfully coped with many challenges in the past posed by severe natural events such as the Tsunami in December 2004, floods in December 2015 and cyclonic storms in the coast over the last three decades, including the Vardah cyclone in December 2016.

MAPS has been a very safe plant always operating as per the stipulated AREB norms and the radiation dose of employees has been well below the stipulated limits.

"All the personnel are fully aware of the nature of work, working conditions and the type of protections to be used. It is a fundamental requirement of the Radiological Work Permit System and management strictly enforces the same", the DAE said adding that health physics officials of the station monitor the strict compliance as per
AERB rules and regulations.

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