Monday, October 2, 2023 Oct 2, 2023
81° F Dallas, TX


By D Magazine |

Comanche Peak; Nuclear Winner?

In the relatively high-profile electric utility business, we are accustomed to seeing criticism in news stories. However, I was surprised and disappointed at Jeff Posey’s treatment of Comanche Peak [“Cloud Over Comanche Peak,” December]. The article was a one-sided recitation of problems that have afflicted the nuclear industry and Comanche Peak. Your selective use and placement of quotes from Texas Utilities sources cause our company to appear flippant regarding safety issues at the plant. I assure you that safety of construction and operation is our highest priority at Comanche Peak.

The greatest disservice to your readers was one of omission, in that the massive reinspection, reanalysis, and corrective action program over the past three years was totally ignored. Neither was there any mention of the ongoing addition since 1984 of many experienced top-level nuclear managers from other successful nuclear projects. I am confident that the results of this program, under the direction of those proven nuclear managers, will show that Comanche Peak is safe and should be licensed.

Jerry Farrington

Chairman of the Board

Texas Utilities Co.


As a proud member of Texas Utilities and a resident of this community, I feel I must speak out in favor of TU. Since TU’s beginning, it has maintained a tradition of commitment to service-not only to its customers, but to employees and to the advancement of the community. I appreciate the effort Juanita Ellis has shown in her endeavor. I believe in the idea of people fighting for what they feel is right. I applaud Mrs. Ellis for having the courage to challenge a large company. However, while all of us have fears about nuclear energy, I feel our fears are basically unfounded. Nuclear energy, if not properly contained, will lead to disastrous results-as we well know. I have enough faith in TU to realize they have taken all precautions necessary to ensure our safety. I do not believe my company would deliberately ignore the concerns of employees or the standards set by experts.

The allegations against Texas Utilities are serious. I feel TU’s past performance and commitment to service indicate the charges are false.

Vicky L. Depoy


Throwing Darts at DART

Many thinking people appreciate the openness and associated risks Ruth Fitzgib-bons took in her “Editor’s Page” on DART [December]. It appears to me that the scope of DART is both narrow and restricted. The planning should be on a regional concept of Dallas and Fort Worth and all suburban cities (i.e., the old Lone Star). Now is the time to return to the conceptual drawing board.

As it now appears, the city of Dallas has been released of all the annual deficits and large liabilities of the Dallas Transit System, which is now taxed on the suburban level. The city of Dallas has use of the buses and the suburbs have the taxes. That “magic” shell game is still alive and works. The system is not a Dart, is not Area-oriented, is not Rapid or a Transit system (bus), but darts do need to be thrown at it, until DART realizes they can’t fool the world.

George J. Adams Jr.

Grand Prairie

I worked in the accounting department of the old Dallas Railway and Terminal Company from mid-1936 to mid-1942. During much of that time I did most of the accounting for the new, growing bus division. As the city grew, the Electric Board and Share Company chose to purchase buses rather than to build track and buy streetcars. Doesn’t this suggest something to you? At that time the private owners made all of the investment, sold ride tokens for six cents each, and still made a profit. Imagine that.

DART expects the federal government to defray a huge portion of the cost of its proposed rail system. Of course everybody knows that the federal government isn’t anybody; it is just that faraway entity that you curse for its extravagance and interference, until the day comes when you want a handout. DART is a boondoggle for somebody.

Owen Shivers


Parkland: A Joint Effort

Please accept my heartfelt thanks for Sally Giddens’s wonderful article on Parkland’s Special Care Nursery [“Gifts of Life,” December]. The article was well written and an excellent description of the dedication and coverage of our nursing staff. Christmas is a time of stress and loneliness, and your cover story provided us with a boost to our own sense of worth.

Betsey Attel

Vice President

Maternal/Child Health

Parkland HospitalDallas

Sally Giddens’s article on the Parkland Special Care Nursery was extremely onesided. It is true that the nurses work very hard during the eight hours of their shift, but the pediatric residents work at least as hard, often for thirty-six hours straight or more, and they do not receive breaks for meals and coffee as the nurses do. A nurse may be responsible for one or two babies; the senior pediatric resident is responsible for all fifteen babies in the intensive care nursery, as well as all of the babies in the Acute Care Nursery and the Continuing Care Nursery. He or she also must attend all of the high-risk deliveries in OB, and is also supposed to teach the Special Care Nursery intern and answer the Newborn Nursery intern’s questions.

These residents are from Children’s Medical Center, not Southwestern Medical School as the article stated. I thought it was quite unfair of you to portray them as bumbling novices from whom the babies must be protected. You were also incorrect in writing that the nurses inserted a tube in a baby’s trachea. Only doctors are allowed to perform this procedure.

Elizabeth Anne Booth, M.D.


Ms. Giddens writes that it’s hard to ask a nurse to work a second shift when she’s already given 150 percent for eight hours. What about the doctors?! The doctors who staff the Special Care Nurseries work thirty-two- to thirty-six-hour shifts every three days, with ten- or twelve-hour shifts on all the other days. They receive no days off during their four-week-long stints in the nursery, of which there are several during their residency.

I think it’s safe to say that the doctors feel the tremendous pressures and utter exhaustion of working in the nursery at least as much as the nurses do. given the doctors’ heavy responsibilities and torturously long hours. So let’s not forget that the doctors give an enormous part of themselves, too. I know-I happen to be married to one of them.

Stella Quan Emmerich


Related Articles


The Dallas Dozen

We salute the city's most important players in 2011. They made a difference and inspired others to do the same.
By Jeanne Prejean

Souvenir of Dallas

"The Mighty, Mighty Hands of Mayor Tom Leppert"