Cuomo: Radioactive water leaked into Indian Point groundwater

Gov. Andrew Cuomo says radioactive water has leaked into the groundwater at the Indian Point nuclear plant in Buchanan.

The governor said he was informed of the tritium-contaminated water leak on Friday. He says the plant's operator reported "alarming levels" of radioactivity at three monitoring wells, with one well's radioactivity increasing nearly 65,000 percent.

According to Indian Point's operator, the contamination has not migrated off site and does not pose an immediate threat to public heath.

Cuomo's statement on the matter referred to the leak as Indian Point's "latest failure" and said it is "unacceptable." He said he is directing the Department of Health and the Department of Environmental Conservation to launch an investigation "to determine the extent of the release, its likely duration, cause and potential impacts to the environment and public health."

The plant currently remains up and running. Entergy, which owns and operates the plant, says it did alert the Nuclear Regulatory Commission and local officials about the leak, but not the public because the company says it posed no health threat.

News of the leak comes just months after Gov. Cuomo directed state utility regulators to begin a full investigation of the operations and safety protocols at the nuclear plant.

Elevated levels of tritium were also found in two monitoring wells at the plant back in 2014. At that time, officials said that the contamination likely stemmed from a earlier maintenance shutdown.

AP wire services contributed to this report.

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