SLO County Roundup

June 9, 2010 

Diablo Canyon

Operators at Diablo Canyon nuclear power plant declared an unusual event Wednesday as a result of a small chemical spill.

The event began at 11:12 a.m. when sodium hydroxide, a chemical commonly used as a drain cleaner, spilled in the west side of the plant’s turbine building, which houses the plant’s two electrical generators. The spill was contained and cleaned up by 12:41 p.m.

No one was injured, and the plant continues to operate at full power.

The spill prompted Pacific Gas and Electric Co. to declare an unusual event, a situation out of the normal operations of the plant that does not require an emergency response. Plant officials determined that the spill could have restricted access to some equipment in the area.

— David Sneed

San Luis Obispo

An Atascadero man was sentenced to 16 months in state prison Tuesday for his no contest plea to grand theft.

Richard Garen Corbitt, 31, was arrested March 30 on suspicion of assault with a deadly weapon and robbery after police used an anonymous tip to investigate an alleged stabbing March 17 on the 7200 block of Santa Lucia Road.

He pleaded no contest May 4 to the grand-theft charge, resulting in a conviction without an admission of guilt. The penal effect, however, is the same as that of a guilty plea.

Corbitt was sentenced in Judge Michael Duffy’s court.

— Nick Wilson

North County

Nighttime motorists in Highway 101’s southbound lane will be detoured at Highway 41 until 5 a.m. Friday.

The lane closure, which began Sunday, closes Highway 101’s southbound lane from 9 p.m. to 5 a.m. nightly to allow Caltrans crews to prepare the newly rebuilt southbound bridge over Highway 41 for motorists.

The new bridge is part of the three-year, $17 million Highway 101/41 Interchange Project designed to reconstruct the area where the two highways intersect.

The project is expected to be complete by the end of the year, according to Caltrans.

— Tonya Strickland

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