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Letter to the Editor: Avoid Idiots in Charge

By STEVEN C. BARROWES
Salt Lake

Editor:

Why are many Middle East countries like Egypt, Saudi Arabia, Turkey, Jordan, and smaller Arab states considering building nuclear power plants, when the region has so much oil?

Jordan wants to diversify because they import oil, and oil prices are rising. Perhaps others are worried by prices and Iran's nuclear program, according to an April 15 Washington Post article.

Why do they not fear nuclear, as many in the U.S. do? They probably realize that the Chernobyl disaster happened partly because it had an unsafe design, but mainly because the bull-headed plant manager, who had no nuclear training, insisted on shutting off several safety systems so he could try an experiment. He wouldn't listen to those who had nuclear training.

Practically all of the 400 or so nuclear power plants in the world are built to the safe designs of General Electric or Westinghouse, and are operated by trained, reasonable personnel.

In its half century, the U.S. nuclear power industry hasn't killed one person by radiation, so we needn't avoid nuclear so long as we can continue to avoid unsafe designs and bullheaded bosses.





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