Fire at Penly nuclear reactor in northern France

The Penly nuclear power station near Dieppe, France (file image from 2011) The Penly site is about 10km (6 miles) north-east of Dieppe

Fire crews have been rushed to a nuclear reactor in northern France after an escape of smoke but the energy company EDF says the site is secure.

Ten fire engines were sent to the Penly site near Dieppe, where the reactor was shut down after the alarm was raised at 12:20 (11:20 GMT).

Nobody was hurt, the firm said, and the incident had "no consequences for the environment".

Two small fires had broken out but were later extinguished, the firm said.

The fires were caused by hot oil leaking from a pump inside the reactor building, an EDF spokeswoman said, quoted by Reuters news agency.

The Penly plant has two pressurised water reactors, cooled by water from the English Channel.

France obtains 75% of its electricity from nuclear power and the industry's future has become a political issue.

A release of smoke automatically shut down the No 2 reactor, according to the EDF.

Emergency services tackled the two fires at 13:15, it said on its website.

The head of the local monitoring commission (CLI) for the environment, Serge Boulanger, told AFP news agency a lack of oil in a water pump had caused it to smoke.

"There would have been smoke but no flames," he said.

EDF, however, talked of two "outbreaks of fire".

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