South Korea Approves Restarting of Nuclear Reactor

Troy Young, April 12, 2018, 8:39 a.m.

South Korea's nuclear safety agency said Thursday that it has approved the restarting of a reactor in the country's southeastern region, with the unit expected to come online in the coming days. The Nuclear Safety and Security Commission said it has confirmed the safety of the Kori 4 in an inspection following the reactor's shutdown on March 28 last year due to a coolant leak in a welded part of a drainage pipe.

"We have confirmed that there is nothing that could compromise safe operation of the reactor," the commission said in a statement. The Korea Hydro and Nuclear Power Co., the operator of South Korea's nuclear power plants, has taken steps to improve the safety of similar welded parts on the Kori 4 on the commission's instructions.

The reactor is located in South Korea's second-largest city, Busan, about 450 kilometers southeast of Seoul. The commission is set to oversee 11 follow-up tests for the resumption of the reactor, said Kwon Sang-bong, spokesman for the Kori power plant. He said the reactor could restart operation this weekend.

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