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Plans in Place for Arrival of Nuclear Submarines on Portland


3:37pm 5th March 2013

Portland is getting ready to tackle any radiation accidents that could occur.

The risk comes from the Royal Navy's nuclear powered submarines which are authorised to stop in the port.

Portland Port is one of a handful in the UK where the vessels can be moored. The submarines shut down their nuclear reactors when in harbour and are equipped with extensive safety measures. They very rarely visit, so Weymouth and Portland Borough Council want to reassure people that an incident is highly unlikely, but that there will be an exercise to check that local and national agencies can respond.

So, next week residents and workers around the port will receive a letter telling them more about the drill which will happen in April.

Weymouth & Portland Borough Council Community Safety Briefholder Geoff Petherick told Wessex FM that, "the letter distributed next week reassures people that the 10th of April exercise is just a test and they do not need to be concerned. On 10 April people may see some emergency vehicles plus Ministry of Defence and Maritime & Coastguard Agency staff walking around the area. There is no need to be alarmed. This will be just an exercise to check that we are fully prepared in the highly unlikely event of an incident."

For more information, and to access an "Information in the event of a radiation emergency in Portland Port" booklet, click here.

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