Goldfish prank backfires at FirstEnergy nuclear power plant
Six contractors were apparently responsible for a fishy situation at one of FirstEnergy Corp.’s nuclear power plants.
FirstEnergy spent a month investigating how a pitcher holding two goldfish got left in a secure area of its Perry Nuclear Power Plant outside Cleveland. Even federal regulators got involved.
The company on Thursday said that the contractors, who were hired to remove and replace insulation on pipes for inspections, confessed to smuggling five goldfish into the plant in their lunch boxes as a prank.
They avoided security measures designed to look for explosives, guns and other contraband that could actually damage the plant, said Jennifer Young, a spokeswoman for Akron-based FirstEnergy.
“There was no malicious intent that we are aware of,” Young said. “It definitely doesn’t meet the professionalism we expect from our contractors and our employees.”
Because bringing in fish is not actually a security breach, no laws were broken and no criminal charges can be filed, Young said. The workers, however, will not be allowed on FirstEnergy projects any longer, Young said.
She referred questions about the workers and possible discipline to their union, the International Association of Heat and Frost Insulators and Allied Workers. James A. Grogan, president of the union, did not return a telephone call or respond to an email for comment.
Plant workers never found three of the five goldfish, and believe they were gathered and thrown away during a cleanup at the plant, Young said.
Timothy Puko is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. He can be reached at 412-320-7991 or firstname.lastname@example.org.