Crack in concrete studied at Davis Besse nuclear plant

Davis Besse Nuclear Power Plant in Oak Harbor / WNWO Newsfile

Contractors replacing the cracked reactor head at a northern Ohio nuclear plant have discovered a small crack in the thick concrete on the outside of the reactor's containment building.

Federal regulators and the plant's owner are reviewing whether the crack is a serious issue for the Davis-Besse plant outside Toledo. Nuclear Regulatory Commission spokeswoman Viktoria Mytling tells The Plain Dealer of Cleveland the matter will need to be resolved before the reactor is restarted.

Akron-based FirstEnergy Corp. shut down the plant almost two weeks ago so the new 82-ton reactor head could be installed. The building's concrete shell 2 1/2 feet deep is meant to protect the reactor from tornado debris, an aircraft of anything else that might hit it from outside.