Alert and Notification
Within 15 minutes after classifying an incident, Millstone must notify designated state and local government officials within the Emergency Planning Zone (EPZ), via the use of a radiopager system, faxes and a telephone call back system.
At the onset of an emergency at the Millstone and every time a public protective action has been implemented, public alerting sirens will be sounded in all communities within the plant’s EPZ, to alert residents to turn to an Emergency Alert System (EAS) radio or television station for more information. EAS messages would be broadcast from the State Office of Emergency Management’s Emergency Operations Center (EOC).
In the unlikely event of an actual emergency at Millstone, the Joint Media Center would be activated. This joint state and utility media center is staffed by the Governor’s Press Secretary, Connecticut’s Emergency Response Communications Team and liaisons from Millstone. Press releases, media briefings and press conferences are coordinated through the joint media center. The Governor’s Press Secretary oversees the coordination and release of emergency public information from State agencies, local governments and Millstone. The Joint Media Center provides specific instructions and supplemental information to enhance the Emergency Alert System (EAS) messages broadcast.
There are over 150 sirens located in the communities within Millstone’s EPZ. These communities are East Lyme, Groton City, Groton Town, Ledyard, Lyme, Montville, New London, Old Lyme, Waterford, and Fishers Island, NY. These sirens have been installed to alert the public to a nuclear power plant emergency, natural disaster, or other major emergency. Each community’s officials, as necessary, activate their own sirens. Sirens alert the public to tune to their local emergency alert stations (radio or television) for emergency information or instructions.
Sirens are maintained and routinely tested. Each year, a full-scale test of all sirens in the Millstone EPZ is performed. In addition to the drills, many communities routinely test their sirens and some use them as part of their fire warning systems.
Sirens can emit several different tones, each serving a different emergency function:
- A steady tone for 3 minutes (that may be repeated) signals a natural or technological disaster such as severe weather, chemical spills, floods, or a nuclear plant emergency.
- A long wavering tone signals an enemy attack.
- A short wavering tone signals a fire.
- A public address loudspeaker can transmit announcements over a limited distance from the communities’ emergency operations center