Energy giant finds success with CCO certification

18 April 2008

Exelon Nuclear and Exelon Power jointly hosted two CCO Practical Examiner Accreditation Workshops for mobile and overhead crane operators in May. A mobile crane workshop was held at Exelon's Peach Bottom Atomic Power Station near Delta, PA, while the overhead program was conducted at Eddystone Generating Station, a fossil fueled facility, in Eddystone, PA. The workshops were attended by 18 participants from Pennsylvania, New Jersey and Maryland (see photo right).

Exelon's involvement with CCO certification goes back 10 years, almost to the very beginning of the program. In June 2000 the company hosted its first practical examiner workshop. Wayne Emberger, company outage services supervisor, coordinated the most recent workshops. “Our overhead crane operators are faced with critical lifts with tight tolerances during reactor assembly and disassembly operations,” he said. “Operators lift critical equipment in tight places, such as turbines, valves, pumps, motors and generator rotors weighing as much as 200 tons. In addition, hydraulic crane operators make interim spent fuel storage installation lifts, and all operators must comply with special NRC rigging and lifting requirements.”

Noting that Exelon operates literally hundreds of overhead and mobile cranes, Emberger said, “We have found great success with the CCO programs. In particular, CCO written and practical examinations have helped us improve our company's preparatory crane training.” And with possible new state and federal requirements pending, Exelon's involvement with NCCCO has become even more important and valuable, Emberger said.

Exelon Corp., headquartered in Chicago, IL, is one of the nation's largest electric utilities with more than $15 billion in annual revenues and approximately 17,000 employees. It distributes electricity to approximately 5.2 million customers in Illinois and Pennsylvania, and gas to 460,000 customers in the Philadelphia area. Exelon operates the largest nuclear fleet in the United States, and the third largest commercial nuclear fleet in the world. The current fleet of fossil and hydroelectric generation, operated by Exelon Power, is composed of 109 units that provide approximately 8,000 megawatts (MW) of generating capacity using a variety of fuels.

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