News Release
April 09, 2004

OCONEE NUCLEAR STATION RECEIVES NOTICE OF VIOLATION AND FINE FROM NUCLEAR REGULATORY COMMISSION

CHARLOTTE, N.C. -- Duke Power was notified today by the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) of a $60,000 proposed fine for the violation of NRC requirements at the Oconee Nuclear Station.

The violation is associated with May 2001 changes to the station's licensing basis document.  Duke Power analysis prior to making these changes indicated that NRC approval was not required; the NRC disagrees.

"This violation concerns the timing of actions that would be taken in certain hypothetical situations," said Ron Jones, Oconee site vice president.  "We do not believe that our actions in 2001 adversely impacted the safety of the plant or the public.  The Oconee team has a tradition of excellent operations that spans more than three decades.  Our commitment to safety comes first in everything that we do.

“We continue to work with the NRC to understand their concern and resolve this issue,” said Jones.

The company will decide within 30 days whether to pay the civil penalty or protest its imposition.

Duke Power, a business unit of Duke Energy, is one of the nation’s largest electric utilities and provides safe, reliable, competitively priced electricity and value-added products and services to more than 2 million customers in North Carolina and South Carolina. In 2004, Duke Power celebrates 100 years of service. The company operates three nuclear generating stations, eight coal-fired stations, 31 hydroelectric stations and numerous combustion turbine units. Total system generating capability is approximately 19,900 megawatts. More information about Duke Power is available on the Internet at: www.dukepower.com.

Duke Energy is a diversified energy company with a portfolio of natural gas and electric businesses, both regulated and unregulated, and an affiliated real estate company. Duke Energy supplies, delivers and processes energy for customers in North America and selected international markets. Headquartered in Charlotte, N.C., Duke Energy is a Fortune 500 company traded on the New York Stock Exchange under the symbol DUK. More information about the company is available on the Internet at: www.duke-energy.com.

Contact: Dayle Stewart
Phone: 864/885-4608
24-Hour Phone: 704/382-8333 - Option 1
e-mail: dmstewar@duke-energy.com