A “small water leak” discovered inside the PPL Susquehanna nuclear plant’s concrete containment structure forced the shutdown of the Berwick, PA-based reactor.

Though the leak is small enough to continue operating the reactor safely, PPL Susquehanna said it took the “conservative measure” to shut it down, the utility said. The company did not say when the unit might come back up.

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The company noticed the slow leak over the past “few weeks” and it represents no safety risk to those living near the plant in Luzerne County, about 50 miles (80.5 kilometers) northwest of Allentown, PA, said Miriam Mylin, a spokeswoman for PPL Susquehanna, an affiliate of PPL Corp.

The plant’s other reactor continues to operate and there will be no disruption in electrical service to customers of the plant, jointly owned by PPL Susquehanna and Allegheny Electric Cooperative.

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“This is a very low level event,” Mylin said. “The leak has been very slow, but trending upward over the past few weeks. It’s very small, but we just wanted to shut it down now to get it taken care of before the winter.”

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