The Nuclear Reactor Tour Continues

1.5 million-pound, 16.5-foot-diameter decommissioned reactor pressure vessel

It’s Huge, It used to be radioactive, it’s here and It’s Moving Out Tomorrow Morning!  A 1.5 million pound 16.5-foot-diameter decommissioned reactor pressure vessel from Southern California Edison’s San Onofre Nuclear Generating Station is making its way across the southwest on its way to a nuclear waster storage facility in northern Utah.

Currently sitting in the Apex industrial area, awaiting the final leg of the journey that begins Monday morning, right before sunrise.  The reactor will mark the largest item to ever travel on Nevada roads when it begins the final leg of its retirement journey, heading for Utah.

“The load is being moved across the state using six heavy-duty Class 8 trucks with four tractors pushing and two pulling using a series of interconnecting tow bars to create a 23-foot-tall by 306.5-foot-long train that will be the same length as the Statue of Liberty laid on its side,” according to Tony Illia, Nevada Department of Transportation spokesman.

There will be a combined 4,000-horsepower used to transport the configuration, which will weigh in at a massive 2.4 million pounds. The load will be dispersed across 460 total tires, up to 18 inches in width to prevent damage to state roads, bridges or drainage facilities, according to Mr Illia.

With the speed restrictions, it’s anticipated it will take seven days to travel the approximately 450 miles to reach its destination at Energy Solutions’ Nuclear Waste Facility in Clive, Utah, about 75 miles from Salt Lake City.

The proposed route of travel, to keep the load off Interstate 15, will take U.S. Highway 93 to state Route 318 to U.S. Highway 6 back onto U.S. 93, exiting at Wendover Boulevard to Florence Way then back onto Interstate 80 into Utah.


The total convoy will span up to 2 miles in length, including extra trucks, mechanics, and project managers!

According to reports, the canister has the least hazardous radioactive waste classification available by the Nuclear Regulatory Commission at less than 0.1 millirem an hour, or 500 times below the U.S. Department of Transportation limit. “A chest X-ray, by comparison, provides a dose of 10 millirem,” Illia said.

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