Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Wrongful death suit filed in wake of fatal accident at Arkansas Nuclear One

On Easter Sunday, March 31st, 2013, 24-year-old Wade Walters was working at the only nuclear power plant in Arkansas owned by Entergy, as operators were removing the Main Turbine Generator Stator.  The stator device, which weighs over 500 tons, fell and killed Wade, injured others, and caused a loss of off-site power.

This week, the family of Wade Walters filed a wrongful death lawsuit which states; “This is an action for wrongful death, ordinary negligence, negligent hiring, negligent training, negligent supervision, negligent retention, negligent hiring of an independent contractor, for declaratory judgment, and for punitive damages, stemming from multiple incidents of recklessness and negligence that lead to the collapse of an industrial crane on Easter Sunday, 2013, killing Wade Walters.”

The suit is filed against Bigge Group Inc, Biggie Power Constructors, Biggie Crane and Rigging Co., Siemens Energy Inc, DP Engineering Inc, Entergy Arkansas Inc, Entergy Operations Inc, and three unidentified individuals.

The suit alleges that Entergy scheduled downtime with the Nuclear Regulatory Commission to carry out the Main Turbine Generator Stator removal operation.  Once that commitment was made, if Entergy was unable to complete the work within the time agreed upon, the utility would be fined.  Entergy attempted to get the company which normally moves the Stator, but the contractor said they would be unable to safely remove the device in the time frame allowed.  The licensee then approached other companies, many of whom agreed with the initial analysis.  Eventually, Entergy located a company which would be willing to carry out the operations, Biggie, who was also the lowest bidder.

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