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19 Oct 2017

Radiation accident response exercise in Belarus over

OSTROVETS DISTRICT, 19 October (BelTA) – The exercise for practicing responses to radiation accidents in Belarus ended in Ostrovets District on 19 October, BelTA has learned.

Deputy Prime Minister of Belarus Vladimir Semashko made a few comments at the end of the exercise. “During the scheduled exercise the Emergencies Ministry and other agencies demonstrated their complete readiness for what theoretically may happen. But we should be ready for any unexpected occurrences. All the observers, participants of the exercise and guests mentioned the high level of readiness for dealing with emergencies,” said the deputy prime minister.

We seriously prepare for launching the nuclear power plant. The first power-generating unit is supposed to be commissioned in late 2019. The second one will go online in 2020,” reminded Vladimir Semashko. “During this exercise we demonstrated that we are ready in every field. We demonstrated that the specialists, who have been trained in our universities, and the specialists with a record of operating nuclear power plants, who have been hired elsewhere, are ready to act in real conditions. They are ready to respond to nominal and off-nominal situations.”

The evacuation of people, who live within a 3km radius of the Belarusian nuclear power plant, was practiced on 19 October. The readiness of the nuclear power plant personnel to localize incidents was tested. Actions were practiced using the nuclear power plant control room simulator.

Representatives of the Belarusian Emergencies Ministry noted that the exercise relied on an impossible emergency with radioactive substances leaving the nuclear power plant site. In line with the scenario of the exercise a reactor of the nuclear power plant suffered a major accident, the reactor pressure vessel was broken open, and radioactive substances escaped into the atmosphere.

The radiation accident response exercise was scheduled to take place in Belarus on 18-19 October. The exercise was arranged in line with the international commitments undertaken by countries that are about to commission major nuclear energy installations. The purpose of the exercise was to check the readiness of the rapid response system, which is crucial for working out plans for responding to emergencies outside the Belarusian nuclear power plant site among other things. Representatives of central government agencies, representatives of CSTO and CIS member states took part in the exercise as well as assets and units of the Emergencies Ministry, the Interior Ministry, the Defense Ministry, the Healthcare Ministry, the Energy Ministry of Belarus and the Russian Emergencies Ministry.

 

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