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Security critical to new nuclear plants

News

NUCLEAR SECURITY experts this week played down the risk of a 9/11 style terrorist attack on a nuclear power plant from hijacked aeroplanes but still advised against building new plants on airport flight paths.

Office for Civil Nuclear Security (OCNS) director Roger Brunt said nuclear site security was paramount if there was to be public confi dence in a new build programme.

He was presenting evidence to the Commons Trade & Industry select committee this week, Currently 700 Civil Nuclear Constabulary officers aided by 42 OCNS staff oversee the security of the 47 nuclear sites around the country, he said.

Fears of 9/11 style attacks on nuclear reactors have grown since the bombings in London last July when Greenpeace claimed that maps of Britain's nuclear power stations were found in the boot of the car owned by one of the bombers.

Brunt admitted that there was a risk from such attacks but said that small-scale intrusions and accidents were more likely, and should be of more public concern.

Brunt stressed that the security of any new build would be taken very seriously, adding that the site layout would have to be approved by him before any nuclear activity can begin.

He also told the committee that tight controls would be put on foreign companies and personnel to ensure that site plans did not get into the hands of people with malicious intent.

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