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Energize! Nuclear Security

NCJ Number
Security Management Volume: 32 Issue: 5 Dated: (May 1988) Pages: 71-74
C E Higgins
Date Published
4 pages
The main objectives of a nuclear security program are to protect the plant from radiological sabotage, to ensure the health and safety of employees, to preserve the plant's generating capabilities, and to avoid costly repairs due to sabotage.
Two major concerns have promoted the visibility of security at nuclear power plants: the growth of violence and terrorism and stepped-up enforcement of security regulations. Many plants meet minimum code requirements but do not consider the actual effectiveness of their security programs. Security consists of a complex operation that includes security force management, physical security, devices and systems, administrative controls, trained plant staff, proper plant design and construction, and cooperation with local law enforcement agencies. The purpose of these programs is to prevent radiological sabotage. The site security force is made up of management and uniformed security personnel. The primary duties of the security force is to enforce security rules and supply the response capability in emergencies. The members of the uniformed force are carefully screened and intensively trained. All of a plant's security plans, personnel, and technology share one purpose: to control access. However, an authorized person is also the most likely to cause damage or sabotage without warning. The plant's physical protection is made up of a series of definable elements that detect, delay, and defend. Additional internal security is provided by building structures and locked and alarmed doors. The three major administrative controls are (1) the physical security plan, (2) the safeguards contingency plan, and (3) the training and qualification plan. Two minor administrative controls are safeguard events reports and compensatory measures. Failing to follow these controls jeopardizes the plant and subjects it to possible fines and penalties. Other important security considerations discussed are trained plant staff, plant design and construction, and local law enforcement agencies.


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