Nuclear Refueling Outage Brings 2,000 Employees To Cordova - News and Weather For The Quad Cities -

Nuclear Refueling Outage Brings 2,000 Employees To Cordova

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A Refueling outage begins this week for the Exelon Nuclear Plant in Cordova and 2,000 workers are coming into town to assist with the outage.

"We have two reactors on site and once a year we shut down one of the reactors for a little over two weeks," said Tim Hanley, Quad Cities Station site vice president. Hanley said the plant needs more than double the manpower during this crucial process.

"We take the opportunity when the equipment is not running to do preventative maintenance, modifications and upgrades to the plant," he said.

But the job isn't easy. High levels of radiation can be found throughout the plant.

"A lot of these people are unfamiliar with working at nuclear power plants or are unfamiliar with working at this one," said Bill Stoermer, Quad Cities Station communications manager. Radiation exposure is one of the top concerns.

"We want to limit the amount of radiation exposure that those workers get while they're on our property," Stoermer said.

"We have radiation protection technicians in the area to continuously to monitor the radiation exposure."

Still, the workers come from all over the country to work at the Cordova plant because the money is good and they receive overtime opportunities. And they're welcomed by businesses across the QCA.

"It's a huge economic impact for the Quad Cities region," Stoermer said. "These people stay in our hotels, buy gasoline for their vehicles and go to our restaurants."

An annual visit from these 2,000 employees typically results in a $20M economic impact for the region.