updated 12/21/2006 9:17:53 PM ET 2006-12-22T02:17:53

Some workers at a nuclear power plant complex just north of New York City are reluctant to raise safety concerns because they fear retribution, the Nuclear Regulatory Commission said Thursday.

During an inspection of the Indian Point complex in September, “We found out that there were workers who perceived that they would be treated negatively by management for raising issues and consequently some of the workers expressed reluctance to raise issues under certain circumstances,” said NRC spokesman Neil Sheehan.

“We refer to it as a chilling effect, a situation when workers do not feel comfortable raising safety concerns,” Sheehan said.

An NRC report was sent Thursday to Indian Point owner Entergy Nuclear Northeast criticizing Entergy for not acting on “chilling” issues raised last year and earlier this year.

Entergy issued a statement saying managers at Indian Point, about 30 miles north of New York City, would discuss the report with workers and get their opinions on how to “reinforce a culture that encourages all workers to raise issues with management and not feel hesitant about it.”

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