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A nuclear steam generator is slowly making its way across North County on a top-secret route from San Onofre to Utah, where it will be disposed of.

Officials say that the radiation levels are small enough that standing next to it for an hour would be less exposure than getting dental x-rays.

At 399 feet, the truck is longer than a football field and requires several “pusher trucks” behind it and "puller trucks" in front of it to move it along the streets. Each set of wheels on the trailer moves individually and it has a 70-foot turning radius.

The generator itself is suspended by steel cables and chains. Because the truck is so long, it will operate at night and be parked during the day.

The trucks are being protected by local police as well as armed guards, and the travel route is not specified for safety reasons. Today, August 2, however, the truck will be parked just east of Nordhal Road on Mission Road. Tonight it will move eastward.

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Comments

monaghan Aug. 3, 2011 @ 4:21 p.m.

That's funny, whenever I go to the dentist, she says getting full-mouth x-rays is the radiation equivalent of standing next to the now-obsolete San Onofre nuclear power plant steam generator you are describing here. By the way, who's in charge of that thing -- SDGE? You didn't say.

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tomjohnston Aug. 4, 2011 @ 10:01 a.m.

The last dental xray I had was about a year ago. Apparently, at some point I had chipped a maxillary second molar,which led to decay and by the time I felt it and got to the dentist, I needed the dreaded root canal. LSS, when they did the rays, they didn't xray. They put an electronic sensor in my mouth and the looked at the image on a laptop. No xray machine, no films to look at, it was very cool. Digital xrays, very little radiation, done in a flash. BTW, my dentist said the amount of radiation exposure during a standard dental xray exam is about the equivalent of a cross country airline flight. I been on hundreds of airline flights in my time and I've driven past SanO thousands of times, so I guess the damage is done. Good thing we wanted to stop after 2 kids, I guess. LOL!!!!!

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K. Aitken Aug. 3, 2011 @ 5:09 p.m.

Southern California Edison is responsible for it but it's being escorted by CHP. Top speed is 15MPH so it's going to take at least three weeks to make the 800+ mile trip. It's on the 15 near the boarder check now and rumored to be headed up to Winchester road.

This is the first of four that will be transported this way through N. County; they plan to have them all in Utah by December '11.

Too funny about the dentist. And kind of scary too. I wonder if anyone has a Geiger counter...

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tomjohnston Aug. 4, 2011 @ 10:48 a.m.

It went through Temecula last night and headed out towards French Valley. It's going to take back roads to avoid some bridges incapable of holding its weight then get back on I-15 going north in Murrieta. Permits have been issued for it in Victorville, so it seems that they are going thru the Cajon Pass at some point, so I would imagine there would be a freeway closure coming up fairly soon. Hopefully they do it during the week so the gambling junkies on their way to Vegas don't have a fit. Clive, Utah is in the northwestern part of Utah east of SLC, so one would imagine an I-15 route most of the way BTW, the name of the company doing the move is Perkins Specialized Transportation Contracting

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