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More Than 1,300 Tubes Damaged At Ailing San Onofre Nuclear Plant

The utility that runs the San Onofre nuclear power plant in California says over 1,300 damaged tubes in its ailing steam generators will be taken out of service.

San Onofre Nuclear Generating Station
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Above: San Onofre Nuclear Generating Station

The seaside plant between San Diego and Los Angeles has been offline for more than three months while investigators probe why hundreds of tubes in the virtually new equipment have eroded rapidly.

The figures released Tuesday come just days after a Southern California Edison executive said the company hopes to restart at least one of the twin reactors next month.

Federal regulators say there is no timetable for a restart, while activists charge the plant is unsafe.

Each of the four generators has nearly 10,000 tubes that carry radioactive water. The number retired is well within the limit allowed to continue operation.

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