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Lightweight nuclear tests could endanger North East - Hall

June 10, 2011 12:15 PM

Rubber-stamping lightweight security tests of nuclear plants could be a danger to the North East, according to local MEP Fiona Hall.

Speaking in the European Parliament today, Fiona warned the Government against using their own recent checks to avoid stricter tests agreed across Europe.

Fiona called for assurances that nuclear power plants, like the one in Hartlepool, will be subjected to the rigorous stress tests agreed by Europe-wide regulators .

Fiona said, "The UK jumped the gun with its own safety tests, publishing interim results before the stress test criteria had even been agreed. For public reassurance, especially here in the North East where we have a nuclear plant on our doorstep, the Government needs to make clear that the more comprehensive tests now agreed will be fully carried out as part of the investigations by UK regulator Dr Mike Weightman .

"W hat's more, it would be irresponsible to green light the next generation of plants - including one planned for the North East - without first carrying out comprehensive safety checks. I am concerned that the Government is gearing up to give the go ahead very soon to new nuclear plants. But the stress test process will not be complete until June 2012.

"Like many people, I am opposed to nuclear power. But even those who are in favour of nuclear must surely be keen to adhere to the safety procedures agreed by all EU countries