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Shots fired at TVA Watts Bar Nuclear Plant

11:26 PM, Apr 21, 2013   |    comments
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Update 6:30 p.m.

A TVA spokesperson confirmed that a security officer patrolling TVA Watts Bar Nuclear Plant in Spring City was involved in a shootout with a suspect Sunday at about 2:00 a.m.

The security incident happened on the Tennessee River side of the plant property, more than a quarter mile from the plant's protected area, which houses its reactor and power production facilities.

TVA spokesperson Jim Hopson said the subject traveled up to the plant on a boat and walked onto the property.  When the officer questioned the suspect, the individual fired multiple shots at the officer. The officer shot back, and when he called for backup, the suspect sped away on his boat. 

"We've seen instances where everyday events can be used by those who want to do harm, we all need to be on the lookout for unusual events and then respond appropriately when those things happen," said Hopson.

At least one bullet struck the patrol vehicle, but the officer was not injured in the incident.

TVA officials labeled the incident as an "unusual event," which is the lowest level of its four emergency classifications.

In a press release, TVA confirmed the area was under a heighten level of security until about 12:30 p.m. Sunday.

Plant officials said the incident didn't threaten the plant's security.

FBI, TVA and NRC officials are investigating the incident, and authorities have not named a suspect at this time. 

NRC staff from its Atlanta office are monitoring the event, along with its resident inspector who responded to the site.

Previous Story

Authorities are investigating an incident where gun shots were fired at TVA Watts Bar Nuclear Plant on Sunday just after 2:00 a.m.

The incident happened on the Tennessee River side of the plant property, but several hundred yards from the site's protected area that houses its reactor and power production facilities. TVA officials labeled the incident as an "unusual event," which is the lowest level of its emergency classifications.

In a press release, TVA confirmed the area was under a heighten level of security until about 12:30 p.m. Sunday.

Plant officials said no one was injured in the incident and it did not threaten the plant's security.

Authorities have not named a suspect in the investigation. TVA said it notified the NRC along with other federal agencies.

Stay with 10News and wbir.com for the latest developments.



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