Oldbury staff updated me on progress with their intermediate level waste (ILW) decommissioning programmes at the nuclear licensed site and other matters related to the Site's intervention plan for 2016/17.
I examined how the arrangements for accumulation of ILW, leakage and escape of radioactive waste, decommissioning and organisational capability were applied to nuclear safety activities on the site. My inspection was in part a joint inspection with the Environment Agency Regulator. We witnessed some of the activities being undertaken in the pond area and followed the route taken by low level waste skips from the pond to the temporary laydown area on the reactor pile cap.
I did not undertake an inspection of a safety system during this visit to the site.
I was shown a comprehensive data base of ILW on the Oldbury site. I was told the information was updated regularly.
The prevention of leakage and escape of radioactive waste was demonstrated by Oldbury. Pond leak tests in December 2016 indicated a small leak had developed in the pond water system. We were told how the site considered the potential cause and isolated parts of the system in sequence. We were informed that this appeared to have reduced water loss per day to the expected level from evaporation.
I asked about progress with reducing the radioactive hazards on the site. I was told and saw evidence that since my last inspection on the site, Oldbury had made significant progress in removing equipment from the pond, including over 40 skips out of about 100 that will be processed through the low level waste (LLW) disposal routes. We were told that preparations were underway to deal with higher dose-rate items currently stored in the pond.
Oldbury provided the Environment Agency Regulator and me with an update on the other ILW and decommissioning activities being undertaken on the site. We noted Oldbury was applying experience gained from doing similar activities at other Magnox Ltd decommissioning sites when dealing with waste management and decommissioning activities. 8. I asked Oldbury to ensure licence condition arrangements reflected the way activities were being managed on the site. In particular, I advised that there is a clear link between the programme staff and the site management to make it clear how nuclear safety was being managed and where responsibilities for nuclear safety lay. The site management agreed to consider this further.
Oldbury adequately met the nuclear site licence conditions under consideration in the activities inspected.