A new report has revealed the plans in place in case there is an emergency incident at Hinkley Point C.
If there was a nuclear incident at the plant, the nearby population would be told to stop consuming vegetables, milk and water within 24 hours, according to the report.
Hinkley Point C in Bridgwater will be the first new nuclear power station built in the UK in more than 20 years.
The 230-acre plant is being constructed by the French energy company EDF and is expected to be operational for 60 years following its projected completion in 2023.
This latest report, compiled by the Hinkley Point C Stakeholders reference group for the Welsh government, has raised concerns around the plant’s impact on fish species and water temperatures in the Severn estuary.
The report has identified a detailed emergency planning zone (DEPZ), which covers the area that would be affected by a potential nuclear incident.
The report has detailed a list of measures that would be taken within hours of an incident, should one ever occur.
The plans have been drawn up by Somerset County Council.
The report says: “The local population within a DEPZ will be contacted if there is an incident on site that might result in a release and informed as to what action to take (e.g. evacuation and to where).”
The report also detailed a further zone beyond the DEPZ, with a radius of 30km where food and water restrictions would be in place in the aftermath of an incident.
The presence of this wider zone is intended to “assist local authorities in planning for extremely unlikely but more severe events”.
This wider radius covers Taunton, Bridgwater, Minehead, Bidgwater, Weston-super-Mare and Burnham-on-Sea.
A separate report by EDF in 2019 for Hinkley Point B states that: “It is recommended that advice be issued within 24 hours to restrict consumption of leafy green vegetables, milk and water from open sources or rain water in all sectors of the detailed emergency planning zone and downwind of the site to a distance of 43km”.
The report states that a further report and emergency plan are needed for the Hinkley site before nuclear fuel is installed at Hinkley Point C.
SomersetLive, 19 March