Office for Nuclear Regulation

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Regulator, 9 Dock, VDMP, NSIP and IN Meetings,  Level 3 RIF

Executive summary

Purpose of intervention

This intervention at the Devonport Royal Dockyard Limited Licensed Site was undertaken as part of the 2015/16 intervention plan and propulsion sub-programme strategy.

Interventions Carried Out by ONR

The main purpose of this visit was: to attend regulatory update meetings, discuss progress on the nuclear safety improvement programme, discuss improvement notice I/2014/ONR/DMM/001, attend the level 3 regulatory interface meeting and meet with TU representatives.

Explanation of Judgement if Safety System Not Judged to be Adequate

A system based inspection was not carried out.

Key Findings, Inspector's Opinions and Reasons for Judgements Made

The 9 Dock Plant Manager reported that no significant nuclear or conventional safety events have occurred on 9 Dock which require immediate regulatory attention.  I concurred with his view.

A shadow SSN programme is being developed which will realistically show the activities which can be undertaken in the SRC while still allowing sufficient outage time for maintenance and safety improvements to be carried out.  This plan will form the basis for through life management on the site.  This should provide a much better basis for planning and the delivery of safety improvements.  DRDL is also starting feasibility studies into the use of 8 and 10 Docks.

In a number of areas senior managers stated that instructions have been given for vacancies to be filled.  This is welcomed and addresses concerns over the number of vacancies in key posts.  However, DRDL has been experiencing some difficulty in recruiting suitably qualified and experienced people.    A new post of Licence Site Plant Manager is being introduced to work alongside the existing plant managers, subject to a management of change submission.

DRDLs update on the Nuclear Safety Improvement Programme indicates that it continues to have board level support and there has been progress in the work streams.  The project for work authorisation and control provided evidence of progress and will have embedded new arrangements in the SRC by December 2015.  The pilot for the LC 36 arrangements will be started by the end of September and the arrangements should be in place in the SRC by December 2015.  I consider progress in these areas to be satisfactory and ONR will be able to monitor and confirm the implementation later in the year.

DRDL will send details of the planned high level organisational change to ONR by Friday 11 September 2015.  This will be subject to a management of change submission.

Conclusion of Intervention

No shortfalls or issues were found which adversely affected nuclear safety or were judged to be of such regulatory concern as to require immediate action.  No regulatory issues were raised.