Science: Three Mile Island Verdict

Human error is to blame

For many of the tourists who are flocking daily to Pennsylvania's crippled Three Mile Island nuclear power station, the 15-minute documentary may have the ring of authority. Prepared by Metropolitan Edison Co., the plant's operator, and being shown daily at the Observation Center across the river from Three Mile Island's cooling towers, the script has a glib explanation for last March's near disaster. It resulted, says the Met Ed film, from "a complex combination of equipment failures, ambiguous instruments and operator failures . . ." The production also insists that the amount of radiation released into the...

Want the full story?

Subscribe Now

Subscribe
Subscribe

Get TIME the way you want it

  • One Week Digital Pass — $4.99
  • Monthly Pay-As-You-Go DIGITAL ACCESS$2.99
  • One Year ALL ACCESSJust $30!   Best Deal!
    Print Magazine + Digital Edition + Subscriber-only Content on TIME.com

Learn more about the benefits of being a TIME subscriber

If you are already a subscriber sign up — registration is free!