Russia halts reactor after leak at nuclear plant

SAINT PETERSBURG, Aug 28, 2009 (AFP) - Russia on Friday shut down a reactor at its nuclear power plant near the second city of Saint Petersburg after a pump burst, a spokesman for the plant told AFP.

The leak in one of the Leningrad nuclear power plant's four power blocs was discovered late Thursday, the spokesman Sergei Averianov said, adding that levels of radioactivity in the area were within the accepted norm.

Along with repair work on another of the plant's reactors, work on the ruptured pump should be complete by August 31, when the nuclear plant should be fully back online, he added.

Currently only two of the four power blocs at the plant are running.

The Leningrad plant in the town of Sosnovy Bor, about 70 kilometres from Saint Petersburg, is equipped with the same reactors as Ukraine's Chernobyl plant, site of an unprecedented nuclear catastrophe in April 1986.

Source: AFP

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