Refueling activities and performance enhancements underway at Plant Vogtle Unit 1

BIRMINGHAM, Ala., March 13, 2017 /PRNewswire/ -- Plant operators safely removed Unit 1 of the Alvin W. Vogtle Electric Generating Plant offline on Sunday, March 12, at 5 a.m. ET for a scheduled refueling outage.

Each of the two units at Plant Vogtle requires new fuel every 18 months. The most recent refueling outage for Unit 1 was completed in the fall of 2015.

In addition to refueling the reactor during the outage, workers will perform regular maintenance, testing and upgrades to plant equipment.

"Safety is our number one priority during the refueling outage," said Keith Taber, site vice president for Vogtle units 1 and 2.  "A safe and successful outage is achieved through the focus of the entire organization – our employees and our supporting partners. The station has planned for this refueling outage for over a year. This planning ensures the activities are coordinated to ensure safety is maintained at the highest level."

Employees from across the Southern Nuclear fleet as well as nearly 1,100 additional workers from Westinghouse, General Electric, Day & Zimmermann, Williams Corporation and other companies have come to the plant to assist the site employees in completing the multiple task required to ensure the unit will run safely and reliably for the next 18 months.

These additional workers provide considerable economic stimulus to surrounding communities during their stay in the area.

Vogtle Unit 2 will continue to safely generate electricity while Unit 1 is offline and refueling.

About Southern Nuclear:

Southern Nuclear, a subsidiary of Southern Company (NYSE: SO), is a leader among the nation's nuclear energy facility operators and an innovator in advanced nuclear technologies. Southern Nuclear is an essential part of Southern Company's energy portfolio, and its importance will continue to grow as America transitions to a low-carbon energy future. While the company produces clean, safe and reliable nuclear energy, it's also an economic engine powered by quality jobs and community service. Southern Nuclear operates a total of six units for Alabama Power and Georgia Power at the Joseph M. Farley Nuclear Plant near Dothan, Ala.; the Edwin I. Hatch Nuclear Plant near Baxley, Ga.; and the Alvin W. Vogtle Electric Generating Plant near Waynesboro, Ga. Southern Nuclear is the licensee of two new nuclear units currently under construction at Plant Vogtle that are among the first nuclear units being constructed in the United States in more than 30 years. Southern Nuclear received numerous accolades in 2016 for leadership in the advancement of nuclear energy including the Special Achievement Award by the United States Nuclear Infrastructure Council and the Presidential Citation by the American Nuclear Society. Southern Nuclear also received two of the Nuclear Energy Institute's Top Innovative Practice awards and special recognition for achieving excellence in research and performance. Southern Nuclear's Plant Hatch received the ANS Operations & Power Division's Utility Achievement Award for plant improvements that resulted in a record-setting refueling outage duration. The company's headquarters is in Birmingham, Ala.
Twitter: @SouthernNuclear; Facebook: facebook.com/southernnuclear; www.southernnuclear.com

About Southern Company:

Southern Company (NYSE: SO) is America's premier energy company, with 44,000 MW of generating capacity and 1,500 billion cubic feet of combined natural gas consumption and throughput volume serving 9 million electric and gas utility customers through its subsidiaries. The company provides clean, safe, reliable and affordable energy through electric utilities in four states, natural gas distribution utilities in seven states, a competitive generation company serving wholesale customers across America and a nationally recognized provider of customized energy solutions, as well as fiber optics and wireless communications. Southern Company brands are known for excellent customer service, high reliability and affordable prices that are below the national average. Through an industry-leading commitment to innovation, Southern Company and its subsidiaries are inventing America's energy future by developing the full portfolio of energy resources, including carbon-free nuclear, 21st century coal, natural gas, renewables and energy efficiency, and creating new products and services for the benefit of customers. Southern Company has been named by the U.S. Department of Defense and G.I. Jobs magazine as a top military employer, recognized among the Top 50 Companies for Diversity by DiversityInc, listed by Black Enterprise magazine as one of the 40 Best Companies for Diversity and designated a Top Employer for Hispanics by Hispanic Network. The company has earned a National Award of Nuclear Science and History from the National Atomic Museum Foundation for its leadership and commitment to nuclear development and is continually ranked among the top utilities in Fortune's annual World's Most Admired Electric and Gas Utility rankings. Visit our website at www.southerncompany.com.

SOURCE Southern Nuclear

For further information: Southern Nuclear Communications, 205-992-5395, Twitter: @SouthernNuclear, Facebook: facebook.com/southernnuclear, www.southernnuclear.com

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