Exelon Generation has started testing the new emergency warning sirens installed in the 10-mile radius surrounding Peach Bottom Atomic Power Station. The tests will be conducted on individual sirens over the next three months.
The tests are part of a larger project to replace all 97 emergency warning sirens in the 10-mile radius around Peach Bottom Atomic Power Station with new, state-of-the-art units featuring battery back-up. The siren replacement project began in May, 2012 and is expected to be completed by the end of 2013. The new and old sirens will operate concurrently during a testing period, after which the old sirens will be removed.
The typical duration of the siren testing around Peach Bottom will be between 30 and 60 seconds and could occur several times in a row. The siren acoustics will be similar to those of the current emergency sirens.
The testing is being coordinated with county emergency management officials. Residents may contact the counties at the following numbers if they have questions during the testing:
Lancaster County: 800-808-5236
York County: 800-427-8347
Chester County: 610-344-5000
Harford County: 410-638-4900
Cecil County: 410-996-5350
The Peach Bottom siren investment is part of Exelon Generation’s commitment to replace and upgrade the emergency sirens at all of the sites in the mid-Atlantic, including Limerick Generating Station, Three Mile Island Generating Station and Oyster Creek Generating Station. This project will involve a total investment of more than $11 million and the replacement of 400 sirens.
While Peach Bottom has never used the sirens for emergency notification, they are often used by Pennsylvania and Maryland emergency management authorities to notify residents of severe weather. The sirens are not a signal to evacuate, but a warning to tune to a local Emergency Alert Broadcast Station.
Peach Bottom Atomic Power Station is located on the west bank of the Conowingo Pond (Susquehanna River) in York County, Pa. The station is home to two boiling water reactors capable of generating 2,280 megawatts combined. Both reactors began commercial operation in 1974.