What to know when the nuclear sirens go off near St. Francisville

Thursday, 30 November 2017, 09:47:53 AM. The sirens around St. Francisville are probably no cause for alarm — at least not if they're blaring at 10 a.m. on a Wednesday.

The sirens around St. Francisville are probably no cause for alarm — at least not if they're blaring at 10 a.m. on a Wednesday.

The River Bend nuclear power plant has released its 2018 siren test schedule and is urging nearby residents, students and workers to re-familiarize themselves with emergency procedures.

Parish siren tests will be held at 10 a.m. on the first Wednesday of each month in 2018, except in July when the test will be held on the 11th, due to Independence Day.

In the event of an actual emergency, the sirens are intended to alert everyone within 10 miles of the Entergy-owned nuclear plant, including portions of East and West Feliciana, Pointe Coupee and East Baton Rouge parishes.

The sirens do not signal an evacuation, the company wrote in its emergency protocol. Rather, those within range should tune a radio to either 1150 AM or 102.5 FM for instructions.

Residents may be ordered to evacuate, shelter in place or take other protective action as directed by emergency personnel.

"The possibility of a serious nuclear power plant accident occurring is very remote. However, as a result of the accident at Three Mile Island in 1979, all nuclear power plants are required to have elaborate emergency plans," Entergy wrote in a media guide.

River Bend began commercial operation in 1986, and its license will come up for renewal in 2025. It provides approximately 8.2 percent of Louisiana's energy needs, according to Entergy.

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