Radiological Emergency at Turkey Point Nuclear Power Plant

In Monroe County, the Upper Keys, especially Ocean Reef and Key Largo, could be affected in the event of an accident at the Turkey Point Nuclear Power Plant, owned and operated by Florida Light & Power.

Radiological Emergency Preparedness

On December 7, 1979, following the Three Mile Island nuclear power plant accident in Pennsylvania, President Carter transferred the Federal lead role in offsite radiological emergency planning and preparedness activities from the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) to the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA).

FEMA established the Radiological Emergency Preparedness (REP) Program to:

  • Ensure the health and safety of citizens living around commercial nuclear power plants would be adequately protected in the event of a nuclear power plant accident
  • Inform and educate the public about radiological emergency preparedness 

REP Program responsibilities encompass only offsite activities, that is, state, tribal and local government emergency planning and preparedness activities that take place beyond the nuclear power plant boundaries. Onsite activities continue to be the responsibility of the Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC).

Zones

The area surrounding a nuclear power plant falls into one of two zones used for emergency planning:

  • Emergency Planning Zone (EPZ)
    • Extends 10 miles from the nuclear power plant
    • Exposure through direct contact with or inhalation of radioactive particles released in a plume 
  • Ingestion Pathway Zone (IPZ)
    • Extends 50 miles from the nuclear power plant
    • Exposure through consumption of contaminated agricultural and dairy products 

Turkey Point Nuclear Power Plant Quick Facts

  • Location: Biscayne Bay
  • Size of site: 3,300 acres
  • First unit operational in 1972
  • Second unit operational in 1973
  • Generates approximately 1,400 million watts of electricity - enough power to supply the annual needs of more than 450,000 homes
  • Manufactured by Westinghouse 

Additional Radiological Emergency Information 

What is a Local State of Emergency? Why are Directives Important?

Where do I call for information if there is a Radiological emergency event?