June 24, 2011
This undated photo made available by the Nuclear Regulatory Commission shows a 5-by-5-inch hole in a section cut from the top of the reactor vessel at the Davis-Besse nuclear plant in Ohio. Discovered in February 2002, the hole was eaten by boric acid that spilled from inside the reactor through cracks in the vessel head. Only three-eighths of an inch of steel cladding remained, making a reactor breach likely in as little as two months, by the NRC's estimate.
Stories this photo appears in:
Federal regulators have been working closely with the nuclear power industry to keep the nation's aging reactors operating within safety standards by repeatedly weakening those standards, or simply failing to enforce them, an investigation by The Associated Press has found.