Swarm of insects cause nuclear reactor to lose power in Michigan

NEWPORT, Mich. — The Enrico Fermi 2 Nuclear Power Plant in Newport lost offsite power Wednesday in what has been described as a “mayfly accumulation.”

In a report released by the Nuclear Regulatory Commission that the outage was “caused by mayfly accumulation” around the facility’s switchyard. Diesel generators started automatically as a backup power supply.

According to WOIO, the facility has been trying to keep mayflies from gathering near the switchyards to avoid such an event. The reactor is located on the western side of Lake Erie.

There was no impact to the health and safety of the public or plant personnel, according to the report.

This isn’t the first time Mayflies have disconnected power from a nuclear power plant. On July 16, 1984, the La Crosse Boiling Water Reactor in Wisconsin a transformer in the switchyard shorted out after the accumulation of wet, dead mayflies.

It was back online in 20 minutes.