A newly-revealed audit shows utility company SCANA was aware that its contractors were being frivolous with millions of dollars in construction materials soon after work at the VC Summer plant got underway in 2013.
The Post and Courier reports the company was not able to solve the issue before the project was abandoned in July. The suspended work came after ratepayers for SCANA and state-owned utility Santee Cooper paid nearly $9 billion towards the ill-fated effort.
The audit conducted by the utility went into depth on how the contractors wrongly identified materials, were unable to find documents and could not account for turbine parts.
The documents obtained by the newspaper suggest SCANA did not correct the problems, despite the utility’s auditors warning that supply issues might cause more problems. Ultimately, issues with the modular design of the new reactors led to delays from suppliers — most notably at a Louisiana plant which built the modules.
According to the newspaper, engineers working on the project said the utility did not inspect the supplies when they were delivered to the Fairfield County plant Those engineers said that led to SCANA buying substandard counterfeit materials for the nuclear reactors under construction. The Nuclear Regulatory Commission requires extensive paperwork on each part going into the reactor, creating more delays when the suppliers could not provide the proper documentation.