It was 5 a.m. at the nuclear power plant on an island in the middle of the Susquehanna River. Suddenly an alarm shrieked. Something was going wrong inside the plant. Within minutes human error and technical failure triggered the worst nuclear power accident in the United States and within hours, the eyes of the world were on Three Mile Island. Wilborn Hampton transports the readers to this pivotal moment in American history, telling the hour-by-hour story of covering the nuclear accident as a U.P.I. (United Press International) reporter. His fascinating account will compel readers to consider one of the most serious questions facing humankind: where can we find affordable, sustainable energy and at what risk?
Wilborn Hampton was born in Dallas in 1940. As a cub reporter in the Dallas U.P.I. office he helped cover the story of the assassination of President John F. Kennedy, and his first-witness account of that day has been published as Kennedy Assassinated! The World Mourns: A Reporter's Story. Of his new title, Meltdown, Wilborn states, "No problem facing the twenty-first century is more urgent than the search for new sources of energy. As future scientists search for a replacement for oil and coal, they must be aware of the inherent dangers of atomic energy." Wilborn Hampton is now an editor at the New York Times and lives in New York City.