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Heysham Power Station offline status 'routine'

John Freeman

One of Heysham nuclear reactors was taken offline on Monday after what owners EDF Energy called an "unplanned outage" - but the power station has categorically denied internet rumours that it was caused by a computer virus.

"We took unit 2 at Heysham 1 off line on 1st November to carry out a routine repair," a spokesperson for the Station told virtual-lancaster.

It's not known when the reactor will be back in action.

"Because of the effect of speculation on the wholesale electricity market, we don't give technical causes or forecast return to service dates for commercial reasons," But it's not an unusual event and there are absolutely no safety implications."

Rumours began to circulate that the reactor's operating systems had been bit by a computer virus, but this has been denied.

"There is absolutely no link between the cause of Heysham 1's trip, and any 'cyber security' issues," the spokesperson added.

Heysham 1's two reactors returned to service in March 2009 following a 17-month outage. The pair are capable of supplying 1,160 megawatts, or enough energy for more than 1.5 million homes.