Ontario is prepared to respond to nuclear emergencies both provincially and internationally. Bruce Power’s CANDU reactors have independent emergency shutdown systems that provide layers of protection against a nuclear emergency occurring on site. The company has spent considerable time and money in adding additional ways to cool the reactors should a loss of power occur at the station and the layers of back-up power fail to work as well.
Although a nuclear emergency situation on the Bruce site is highly unlikely due to the depth of defence at Bruce Power, a detailed emergency plan has been formulated by the Municipality of Kincardine, the Office of the Fire Marshall and Emergency Management (OFMEM) and Bruce Power.
Due to the proximity of Bruce Power, both The Municipality of Kincardine and the Town of Saugeen Shores each have detailed nuclear emergency plans for their municipality.
In the unlikely case of a nuclear emergency, residents within 10 kilometres of Bruce Power would be notified by the province and the municipality, through a telephone notification system, ALERT FM Receivers, Provincial Alert Ready Emergency Alert System and public alerting sirens, giving directives to take actions such as sheltering indoors, evacuating and taking Potassium Iodide tablets.
If the sirens sound, go indoors immediately and listen to local media for instructions.
If your instructed to take potassium iodide:
- Potassium Iodide (KI) tablets are to be taken only when instructed by the Ontario Medical Officer of Health in the unlikely event of a nuclear incident involving a release of radioactive iodine.
- Potassium Iodide protects the thyroid from absorbing radioactive iodine but does not shield or protect from other types of radiation.
If you’re instructed to shelter indoors:
- Go into your home or workplace. If necessary, inform other people to do the same.
- Close all doors and windows.
- Turn off furnaces, air conditioners and any other air intake/exhaust mechanisms.
- Gather your family and your personal emergency kit.
- Stay tuned to designated radio stations for further instructions.
It is important you do not evacuate unless instructed to do so. If you are instructed to evacuate:
- Turn on the radio and find a local station at AM560, AM920, FM91.3, FM92.3, FM93.7, FM94.5, FM95.5, FM97.9, FM99.3, FM101.7 or FM106.5.
- Take your previously packed 72-hour emergency kit, ensuring it has plenty of clothing, necessary medications and personal care items. Take money and credit cards with you.
- Turn off furnace, air conditioning and other air intake mechanisms.
- Close and lock all windows and doors.
- If directed, report to the Reception/Evacuee Centre (Kincardine Davidson Centre – 601 Durham St., Kincardine).
Traffic will be directed along an evacuation route. For your safety, close the windows, shut off all ventilation in the car and listen to the radio for further instructions.
Detailed and Contingency Planning Zones:
Please click the images below to learn more about the zones surrounding the Bruce site and where the reception centre and hospital in Kincardine are located.
In 2016, Bruce Power completed an Evacuation Study of the 10 km area surrounding the Bruce Power site. An independent third party firm worked with the Municipality of Kincardine and Bruce Power to provide an understanding of the estimated time it would take to quickly and safely evacuate the primary zone in the unlikely event of need.
The study concluded showed no issues with the ability to quickly and safely evacuate the area around the Bruce Power site. In fact, evacuation time estimates were conducted for 280 unique cases and findings show that safe evacuation of the area could occur well within 2 to 3 hours which is well within regulatory limits. The study was shared with external agencies to inform plans and make available to the public.
Bruce Power continually supports public safety enhancement efforts and participates annually in drills and exercises with the Municipality, Province and external response agencies.
A full copy of the report can be viewed here.