Three Mile Island True Story: Biggest Things The Documentary Leaves Out

Netflix Documentary Series Accident: Three Mile Island tells the story of the worst nuclear accident in the United States, but omits some details of the true story. Finding the full truth about what happened at Three Mile Island is difficult work, as much information about this impending disaster has been obscured by the public. Combining archival footage, TV broadcasts and live accounts, fall The events of the Three Mile Island crash were explored in depth, but the documentary series still omitted some known facts.

Three Mile Island was once a working nuclear power plant owned by Met-Ed in Middletown, Pennsylvania. The complex on the Susquehanna River has supplied nuclear power from its first reactor since 1974. However, just 90 days after the second reactor was commissioned in 1978, a major problem arose. born. The leaky safety valve allowed coolant to escape from the nuclear reactor, causing core temperatures to rise sharply and causing a partial meltdown of the so-called TMI-2. Although catastrophic damage was narrowly avoided, the dangerously high temperatures and presence of hydrogen bubbles inside the reactor almost turned it into a nuclear bomb, powerful enough to wipe out part of the coast East Sea. The problem was exacerbated by a series of mistakes and failures by Met-Ed engineers. Clean-up after the crash is said to be equally problematic, as whistleblower Rick Parks revealed that Three Mile Island cut corners on safety to save a few dollars in the process.

The media surrounding the Three Mile Island accident (inspired Stranger 2) was as chaotic as the event itself: Citizens and government officials both suspected the Met-Ed and the NRC of trying to minimize the turmoil after Met-Ed was found guilty of falsifying reports causing accidents and conceal the release of radioactive gas and iodine to actual levels of the environment. Influenced by recent movie releases China syndrome, Starring Jane Fonda and Michael Douglas, the film tells a strikingly similar story as the events of Three Mile Island led to a decline in awareness of nuclear energy in the United States and anti-nuclear activists. nuclear take to the streets to start talking about nuclear safety conversation. Currently, fall Tell the whole story here – or much of it. Here’s a breakdown of everything the Three Mile Island documentary series missed.

Pennsylvania authorities were not informed of the crisis for hours

The Three Mile Island emergency began at 4 a.m. on March 28, 1979. However, it took hours for authorities to learn that an impending disaster was smoldering within. As temperatures continued to rise and nuclear engineers at Three Mile Island attempted to troubleshoot, low-level communications around the events described in the Netflix documentary began. The local state of emergency was not declared until nearly three hours later, followed by a series of announcements from the Pennsylvania Emergency Management Agency to Governor Richard Thornburg and Deputy Governor William Scranton III to local government. . Some local authorities said they were not notified of the incident until 10 a.m. or later. The entire crisis was avoided in a matter of minutes and the surrounding area evacuated, valuable time that could make the difference between life and death for residents near Three Mile Island and far away. furthermore. This will be the first of many failures to properly convey the truth about Three Mile Island and Met-Ed over the course of the events.

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The real danger of TMI-2 from Three Mile Island is unknown

TMI archive footage, Crash: Three Mile Island, Netflix

Currently, the radioactivity status of TMI-2 is unknown. Most of the decommissioning work was completed between August 1979 and December 1993—at a cost of approximately $1 billion—but when radioactive concentrations reached safe enough levels, the project was shelved. . There were two reasons for the delay: it was economically reasonable to wait for both TMI units to be decommissioned, and the containment building around TMI-2 itself was highly radioactive. During the shutdown, radioactive cooling water leaked into the building’s concrete. Decontamination was deemed impractical, so the nuclear facility and its contents were encased in concrete and left to rot. The building is currently inaccessible, meaning that today the level of radiation inside its interior is unknown. Some experts have warned that TMI-1 in its current decommissioned state could cause problems on its own, as fuel rods stored in the plant’s spent fuel tanks are considered highly radioactive. Despite assurances from the parent companies of both reactors that the area is considered safe, the record around Three Mile Island has made many hesitate to trust the man at the helm. Because of the many variables surrounding the nuclear plant and its unstable state, the real risks it poses are currently unclear.

Karen Silkwood’s death was never resolved

Three Mile Island Karen Silkwood Accident

love the main character rick park fall, Karen Silkwood is a notorious whistleblower in the nuclear energy world. Her story was even made into a movie: Plywood, Starring Meryl Streep and Cher. Silkwood, who works at the plutonium plant run by the Kerr-McGee Corporation, decided to go public when her concerns about radiation were ignored. The New York Times. minutes after leaving the union meeting second class However, reporter Silkwood was killed in a car crash. The accident was and still is a mystery, made up of many inexplicable clues. Silkwood’s key evidence documents were gone from her car, there were brake marks on the road, and her rear bumper was damaged in a head-on collision — all evidence that someone tried to drive Silkwood out of the way.

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However, the abundance of sleeping pills found in her system has led some to believe that she may have dozed off while driving, a hypothesis that ignores much evidence. While that has never been confirmed, it is widely believed that Silkwood was killed by someone with ties to the Kerr-McGee Corporation to prevent her information from being released to the public. Days before the accident, Silkwood also tested positive for unexplained levels of plutonium in Kerr-McGee, including plutonium in her work gloves and in her digestive tract. The belief that Silkwood was killed for the report created a climate of fear in the nuclear world, causing people like Parks to hesitate before speaking up. To this day, the cause of Silkwood’s crash remains unclear.

The lawsuit over the health effects of the melt is dismissed

Silhouette of Three Mile Island, Meltdown: Three Mile Island, Netflix

The long-term effects of the crash are still much debated. While the Met-Ed and the NRC continued to state that the leaked radiation was unlikely to cause long-term health conditions, people living in the area at the time thought otherwise—and many still think so. So. fallCancer, Hashimoto’s disease, thyroid cancer and lymphoma are just some of the health conditions that residents believe are caused by low radiation levels from the Three Mile Island crash. However, the health claims don’t stop there. In 1996, 20 years after the incident, more than 2,000 lawsuits were filed against Three Mile Island for health effects and medical harm. But the correlation was never strong enough to prove causation, and all cases were dismissed by U.S. District Judge Sylvia Rambo in Harrisburg for lack of evidence. Met-Ed and its insurers have paid out at least $82 million in lost business income, evacuation costs and health claims, but officials have yet to officially contact the medical losses with the Three Mile Island crash.

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Three Mile Island decommissioning will continue until 2079

Netflix crashes, stops working Three Mile Island

After the official cleanup of TMI-2, progress was halted until both reactors could be shut down together. The TMI-1, which was not involved in the accident, was allowed to operate again in 1985. Despite several changes of ownership, the TMI-1 operated for nearly 35 more years until it was officially closed. opened on September 20, 2019, citing lack of profitability due to energy source competition. After events like Three Mile Island and Chernobyl in the Soviet Union, Americans no longer believe in nuclear power and factories shut down left and right.

Now, TMI-1 and TMI-2, owned by EnergySolutions and Exelon Corp. respectively, are ready to be decommissioned. TMI-2 Solutions, the subsidiary of EnergySolutions responsible for decommissioning TMI-2, estimates completion as early as 2037. On the other hand, TMI-1 has a long way to go before it is considered. was decommissioned altogether — more than half a century ago, according to its parent company. Federal mandates require decommissioned nuclear plants to be completely decommissioned after 60 years of closure, meaning that Three Mile Island could be considered radioactive until the end of the 21st century, in Accident: Three Mile Island.

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