LOS ANGELES (AP) — A U.S. Senate committee is planning hearings on how regulators have assessed earthquake risks at California's last operating nuclear power plant.
The hearings were announced Monday after The Associated Press disclosed that a federal expert is urging the Nuclear Regulatory Commission to shut down the Diablo Canyon plant until it can determine whether its reactors can withstand shaking from nearby earthquake faults.
Democratic Sen. Barbara Boxer — chair of the Environment and Public Works Committee — says the NRC is failing to do its job to protect public safety.
She's alarmed that the recommendation by Michael Peck, the NRC's former lead inspector at the plant, was made a year ago and the agency hasn't acted.
The NRC and plant owner Pacific Gas and Electric Co. say the facility is safe.