Monday, April 22, 2013

Media blackout: Possible terror attack on nuclear power plant in Tennessee

Media blackout: Possible terror attack on nuclear power plant in Tennessee, Early Sunday morning, a man approached a security officer at the Watts Bar Nuclear Plant and opened fire. The officer returned fire, and the assailant escaped.

The security officer was unhurt in the exchange.

Later in the day, helicopters and surveillance aircraft could be seen over the plant for several hours.

The nuclear power plant is located about 50 miles northeast of Chattanooga, and is operated by the Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA).

Liberty News reported:

A TVA spokesperson confirmed that a security officer patrolling TVA Watts Bar Nuclear Plant in Spring City was involved in a shootout with a suspect Sunday at about 2:00 a.m.

The security incident happened on the Tennessee River side of the plant property, more than a quarter mile from the plant’s protected area, which houses its reactor and power production facilities.

TVA spokesperson Jim Hopson said the subject traveled up to the plant on a boat and walked onto the property. When the officer questioned the suspect, the individual fired multiple shots at the officer. The officer shot back, and when he called for backup, the suspect sped away on his boat.

At least one bullet struck the patrol vehicle, but the officer was not injured in the incident.

No suspect has been named at this time, and no arrests have been made.

The Times Free Press reported:

TVA has had security problems at Watts Bar before, and two contractors have been convicted of falsifying records about inspections of nonexistent electrical cable that would have served the newest reactor's cooling system.

The NRC in 2011 placed Watts Bar under a security safety flag for several months, but neither TVA nor NRC would discuss why.

U.S. District Attorney William "Bill" Killian said he could not comment Sunday about this newest security investigation.

Aside from local reports, and a conservative blog, this story is not being reported.

It is more than strange that in the same week that the Boston Marathon bombings took place, news of a possible terror attack on a nuclear power plant has been completely ignored by the national media.


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