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Citing critical concerns about equipment failure, the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) has barred SoCal Edison from restarting the San Onofre nuclear plant at this time, the L.A. Times reports.
Trouble at San Onofre has been ongoing since January's radioactive steam leak, and the commission has been trying to determine why tubes carrying hot, pressurized, radioactive water inside the steam generators are deteriorating at a dangerous and unusual rate.
On Tuesday, the cause of the tube trouble was addressed in a letter federal regulators sent to Edison.
Officials said the wear in both Unit 2 and Unit 3 was caused by vibrating tubes rubbing against each other. Additionally in Unit 3, the tubes were rubbing against support structures, according to the NRC. It was still unclear why it was happening.
The order to stay offline comes hours after it was reported that the nuclear plant misled federal regulators about equipment changes.
The facility is prohibited from reopening until the issues are resolved. The status of the dual-reactor plant has led to worries about this summer's power supply.