Author Topic: The Reactor.  (Read 712 times)

Offline castle261

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Re: The Reactor.
« Reply #9 on: February 17, 2020, 04:54:59 PM »
I remember the incident well.


First it was a naval man, a first Lieutenant who fell from the top of the conning tower, in No 7 dock.
I was employed on No 6 dock in them days. I was not the crane driver that removed him.
I believe it may have happened early on a Sunday morning.

Cranes were working 7 days a week, a 24 hours a day ( two drivers - 12 hours each )

Offline Colin walsh

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Re: The Reactor.
« Reply #8 on: February 16, 2020, 09:52:08 PM »
Castle261,perhaps you can help me,as a crane driver do you recall an incident when a crew member of a boat  under refit fell from the fin and was killed,your crane lifted his body to the dock side,just a long shot .talking to a couple of ex mates at a reunion,no one seams to remember the tragedy but me.

Offline castle261

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Re: The Reactor.
« Reply #7 on: February 16, 2020, 12:42:07 PM »
I bow to your expertise Colin, maybe it was the casing, I saw.

I have seen, the ROD`S taken out, before.

pete.mason

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Re: The Reactor.
« Reply #6 on: February 15, 2020, 09:16:20 AM »
I used to visit the towers occaisionaly to service the beer dispense. Sign above the turnstiles always amused me, on the lines of" in case of an emergency designated personnel are to report to stations, all others including visitors are to report to the Garrison church". Always a difficult call as they never gave us a mess name (I think there were 4). Invariably you'd be forced to drink a pint in each of either Stella or Ships Ale before finding out it was the wrong mess.

Offline Colin walsh

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Re: The Reactor.
« Reply #5 on: February 15, 2020, 07:05:24 AM »
Hi I was employed as a helthe physics monitor in the yard,first of all a reactor was never removed from any nuke at Chatham.all the reactors are still on board the hulks at Rosyth  awaiting disposal.
It sounds to me as if the incident you refer to was removing a fuel rod to the core pond.
This entailed lifting the rod,enriched uranium,into a stainless steel container(known as the Guinness bottle) that was then lifted by the "big"crane to the core pond where the rod was removed ,under water, and placed in storage Untill being transferd to a rail flask for transport to a disposal site.
Please don't take this as a criticism,or me being a smart arse,thank you ,
Be pleased to help with any other inquiries ref refueling nuks from one who has been there.  Got the t shirt,and the radiation dose to prove it

Offline Dave Smith

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Re: The Reactor.
« Reply #4 on: February 14, 2020, 06:07:15 PM »
castle261. Snap. I also survived Aldermaston before they really knew how dangerous radiation could be. " We're having some problems with the exhaust  from a radioactive iodine plant, can you help?" So, bold as brass we went to have a look. A half hour inspection showed roof completely corroded around outlet. Suggested a capilliary air washer prior to exhausting to atmosphere!- which hopefully did the trick but ....A few years later, they had a serious leak from pond 5 at Sellafield so I went there to inspect the area & where the water had gone. I was a few hours in many areas of the site deciding what was best to do. They put in some bore hole pumps to clear it out all round the site & left them to periodically test.[size=78%] This was about 26 years ago. I'm still here! OK,I've gone off at a tangent- sorry.[/size]

Offline castle261

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Re: The Reactor.
« Reply #3 on: February 13, 2020, 03:18:24 PM »
I would imagine that all safety checks would have been done - D.M.
My thought, regarding the safety checks, was to get out of the way of any radiation.
Seeing my age now, I have survived 3 nuclear submarine`s around me + a tank of
water from the re-actor compartment. & earlier survived the asbestos dust in the 1950`s.


In them day`s, there was 4 submarine`s of this type. Only one was on patrol.

Offline Dave Smith

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Re: The Reactor.
« Reply #2 on: February 10, 2020, 01:38:28 PM »
It seems strange to me that this very hazardous situation occurred. I would have thought that the whole reactor, complete with shielding, would have been removed together? When I worked in the Nuclear industry ( Hinkley Point), safety was uppermost, with "belt, braces AND string"! 

Offline castle261

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The Reactor.
« Reply #1 on: December 28, 2019, 07:59:50 PM »
Working in the Nuclear Complex - in Chatham Dockyard - One Saturday - it was decided to take the reactor - out of the ` Hunter Killer ` submarine - I was detailed as a spare driver - in case anything
happened. My job was on the Portal crane on the basin side ( crane still there )
My job would be to load gear that they would use - to flood anything getting too hot - with water.
Well, after some time, the big refueling crane sent the big hook down to the opened reactor
compartment. I looked out from another crane - saw the reactor all ready out - high up.
I came down off that crane - like a dose of salts - because I knew the radiation - would come
down  - like an umbrella -- the radiation would get wider & wider. I dashed into the wash room
where I knew the concrete wall`s were thick - to avoid the radiation. Soon the reactor was safely
under the complex water pond - all danger now over - I clocked off - as usual - at 4.00 pm.


The complex was cleared of any personal - not needed - for lifting of the reactor - on that Saturday.