Edison shipping last of old San Onofre nuclear plant generators to Utah

David McNew/Getty Images

The San Onofre Nuclear Power Plant has been offline since January 31, 2012 due to problems with steam generator tubes.

The last of four old steam generators from the San Onofre Nuclear Generating Station is being sent to Utah for storage Wednesday evening.

Southern California Edison (SCE) said the 700,000 pound generator has a low-level of radiation, the same as a dental x-ray if someone stood within 5 to 10 feet of the generator for an hour.

SCE said it takes a special 400-foot-long truck and three weeks to move the old steam generator to Clive, Utah and the travel takes place at night. Two other generators were moved to the storage location last year and another one was recently shipped.

The new steam generators are from Japan’s Mitsubishi Heavy Industries.

Opponents of the nuclear plant say design changes caused problems with steam generator tubes. A radioactive steam leak last January caused the plant to shutdown January 31. 

Edison has submitted plans to restart just one of the plant’s two reactors, for a limited time, on reduced power. The Nuclear Regulatory Commission will rule on the application, but likely not until next year.

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