Office for Nuclear Regulation

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Hartlepool - System Based Inspection (SBI)

Executive summary

Purpose of intervention

The purpose of this intervention was to undertake compliance inspection activities at EDF Nuclear Generation Limited’s (NGL’s) Hartlepool power station in line with the planned inspection programme contained in the Hartlepool Integrated Intervention Strategy (IIS) for 2015/16.

Interventions Carried Out by ONR

I performed a system based inspection to confirm the implementation of safety claims made against control and instrumentation providing protection from hot steam and gas release. During this element of my intervention, I was assisted by a C&I engineer sourced from a technical support contractor. I examined the Licence’s compliance with the following licence conditions (LCs):

In addition I undertook the following interactions with the licensee:

Explanation of Judgement if Safety System Not Judged to be Adequate

On the basis of the evidence sampled during this inspection, I judged that the control and instrumentation providing protection from hot steam and gas release meets the requirements of the safety case and is adequate.

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

From an LC10 perspective, staff training records and profiles were judged to be in accordance with the requirements for the roles performed.  The licensee demonstrated an effective knowledge and understanding in the areas of the safety case examined. I judged the LC10 element of this inspection to be good, warranting an associated Integrated Intervention Strategy (IIS) rating of 2 - good.

From an LC23 and LC24 perspective, based on the evidence sampled during this inspection, the implementation of the technical specifications, commentaries, and schedules were judged to have had adequate alignment with the claims presented within safety case. Some minor suggestions were made to improve clarity of a procedure. I judged the LC23 and LC24 element of this inspection to be adequate, warranting an IIS rating 3– adequate.

Based on the evidence sampled during this inspection, I found that NGL’s list of essential systems included the hot steam and hot gas protection and is used by duly authorised persons to maintain compliance. I considered the arrangements for LC27 to have been adequately implemented and warrant an associated IIS rating of 3 – adequate.

From an LC28 perspective, the licensee demonstrated their processes, procedures and records for the examination, inspection, maintenance and testing the hot steam and hot gas protection. The licensee accepted a minor action placed to review the approach taken for single maintenance test against relevant good practice and to provide additional maintenance documentation. I judged the LC28 compliance element of this inspection to be adequate, warranting an associated IIS rating of 3 – adequate

I undertook further enquiries following identification of defects in a number of non-return valves installed in the reactor auxiliary cooling water system. These defects were detected following planned maintenance and reported to ONR by NGL. The incident had no actual consequences and my intervention did not identify any significant breach of site licence conditions. I am satisfied that the incident does not meet ONR’s investigation criteria.

I have requested that ONR specialist inspectors evaluate NGL’s arrangements for chemistry control against ONR’s expectations for licence condition 23(1) (operating rules) and licence condition 28 (examination, inspection, maintenance and testing). I have also asked an ONR specialist inspector to review the effects of the incident on the long term integrity of components in the reactor auxiliary cooling water system.

The intervention was performed in line with ONR’s guidance requirements (as described in our technical inspection guides) in the areas inspected.

Conclusion of Intervention

After considering the evidence examined during the inspections undertaken against LCs 10, 23, 24, 27 and 28, I considered that the control and instrumentation providing protection from hot steam and gas release met the requirements of the safety case.

Two ONR Issues have been raised to manage the actions raised in relation LC28 during the system inspection and ONR’s follow-up of the incident involving the reactor auxiliary cooling water system.

There are no findings from this inspection that could significantly undermine nuclear safety and no change to the planned interventions and inspections of Hartlepool.