Southern Nuclear, which operates two reactors at Plant Vogtle and oversees a huge construction force building two more, barred 158 workers from the site last year after administering 8,724 drug and alcohol screenings.
According to the company’s annual “fitness for duty” report filed with the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission, workers at Units 1 and 2 had a 55.7 percent likelihood to undergo random tests, while the percentage was 70.2 percent at the upcoming units 3 and 4.
The random tests are in addition to pre-access screenings given to workers before they are cleared to enter the site.
Those pre-access tests yielded most of the positive results.
During 2012, there were 5,440 tests administered to workers at the construction site of units 3 and 4, including 465 Southern Nuclear or Georgia Power Co. staffers and 4,975 contractors or vendors, the report said. Positive results were obtained in 101 of those tests.
At the existing units, 3,284 tests were administered to 1,008 Southern Nuclear or Georgia Power employees and 2,276 contractors or vendors, with positive results obtained 57 times, the report said.
The screenings are designed to detect alcohol, marijuana, cocaine, opiates, PCP and amphetamines, the report said.
Workers who refused to submit to a test were counted among those who failed – and permanently denied access to the site.