Recent Cook Refueling Outage Brought 1,500 Extra Workers To SWM

Unit 1 of the Cook nuclear power plant is now back online. Cook plant spokesperson Bill Schalk tells WSJM News its refueling outage, started September 13, ended on Tuesday morning. This outage took a little longer than usual, thanks to extra work done on the unit’s baffle bolts. There was a lot of activity at the plant these past few months.

“We’ve got about 1,200 AEP employees, and we supplemented that in this particular outage with about 1,500 extra,” Schalk said. “That’s kind of a real mixed bag. Some of them are specific experts. For instance, in the baffle bolt work, we have some technicians over from Germany.”

Schalk tells us the cook plant refueling outages always bring in hundreds of extra workers as the refueling is done along with other maintenance. Those extra workers have an impact on the local economy, Schalk says especially for hotels. Each of the Cook plant’s two reactors has to be taken offline once every 18 months to be refueled.