Manitowoc County Division of Emergency Services

Department of Emergency Management & Joint Dispatch Center

Manitowoc County, Wisconsin

2009 Nuclear Plant Exercise

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 Manitowoc County participated in a full-scale emergency response plume exercise on Tuesday, June 23, 2009 with Kewaunee Power Station.  The exercise was evaluated by the Federal Emergency Management Agency. 

Federal regulations require local and state government agencies, in whose jurisdiction a nuclear plant is located, to biennially demonstrate they can protect the health and safety of people potentially at risk in a 10-mile radius of the plant. 

Nancy H. Crowley, Manitowoc County Emergency Management Director said more than 100 employees and volunteers participated in the June 23 exercise.  Similar staff operations occurred simultaneously in Kewaunee County and Madison .

On Wednesday, June 24, 2009 the county demonstrated the ability to deal with the long-range effects of a nuclear plant accident in an ingestion exercise.  This is a six-year requirement for each plant, according to Crowley.  County, state, and federal agency representatives were evaluated on decision-making, interpretation of technical data and the ability to withhold agricultural and food products that may be radiologically contaminated.  The ingestion exercise involved the Point Beach Plant.  According to Crowley, it should have been conducted in December 2008, however, the state cancelled it because of snowfall.

Crowley said, “It is highly unlikely we will ever have to implement the complex procedures in the County’s Emergency Operations Plan for a nuclear plant incident.  However, practicing the principles we apply to respond to a nuclear plant accident pays dividends in our overall response to all hazards.”

“The residents of Manitowoc County are fortunate to have highly skilled personnel and state-of-the art equipment and facilities ready in the event of a nuclear power plant incident,” Crowley said.  “The money we receive from the utilities each year to support the emergency management program and our annual exercise benefits our county in all areas of emergency preparedness,” she stated.