Monday, March 21, 2011

So what really happened with Hurricane Andrew and the Known Damages at the Turkey Point Nuclear Reactor Near Miami?

From the MIAMI HERALD/Tom Dubouq, September 5, 1992:
"Demolition crews toppled a 400 foot smokestack at Turkey Point [nuclear] power plant [owned by Florida Power and Light Company] Friday, September 4, 1992. The stack, which had a 200 foot gaping crack, was dropped without a hitch, a Florida Power and Light spokesperson said. The other smokestack at the plant will be salvaged. Turkey Point will be shut down for several months while repairs are made. The cost will exceed 90 million [dollars] according to an initial damage report… When Turkey Point was built in the 1960's, its main structures were designed to withstand 235 mph winds. Hurricane Andrew was clocked at 164 mph at the plant. Florida Power and Light officials don't know why the smokestack didn't hold up."
The smokestack did not hold up because Hurricane Andrew had much stronger winds that originally estimated.
Hurricane Andrew was reassessed and upgraded to a CAT 5 years later.
This is the info on the upgrade of Hurricane Andrew.
Saffir-Simpson Wind Scale for Category 5:
Category Five Hurricane (Sustained winds greater than 155 mph, greater than 135 kt, or greater than 249 km/hr).
Catastrophic damage will occur
People, livestock, and pets are at very high risk of injury or death from flying or falling debris, even if indoors in mobile homes or framed homes. Almost complete destruction of all mobile homes will occur, regardless of age or construction. A high percentage of frame homes will be destroyed, with total roof failure and wall collapse. Extensive damage to roof covers, windows, and doors will occur. Large amounts of windborne debris will be lofted into the air. Windborne debris damage will occur to nearly all unprotected windows and many protected windows. Significant damage to wood roof commercial buildings will occur due to loss of roof sheathing. Complete collapse of many older metal buildings can occur. Most unreinforced masonry walls will fail which can lead to the collapse of the buildings. A high percentage of industrial buildings and low-rise apartment buildings will be destroyed. Nearly all windows will be blown out of high-rise buildings resulting in falling glass, which will pose a threat for days to weeks after the storm. Nearly all commercial signage, fences, and canopies will be destroyed. Nearly all trees will be snapped or uprooted and power poles downed. Fallen trees and power poles will isolate residential areas. Power outages will last for weeks to possibly months. Long-term water shortages will increase human suffering. Most of the area will be uninhabitable for weeks or months. Hurricane Andrew (1992) is an example of a hurricane that brought Category 5 winds and impacts to coastal portions of Cutler Ridge, Florida with Category 4 conditions experienced elsewhere in south Miami-Dade County.

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