Office for Nuclear Regulation

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Torness - LC11 and Review of Issues

Executive summary

Purpose of intervention

The purpose of this intervention was to undertake a Licence Condition 11 (LC 11) compliance inspection at EDF Energy Nuclear Generation Limited’s (NGL’s) Torness power station in accordance with the planned inspection programme contained in ONR’s Integrated Intervention Strategy for Torness.

This intervention involved the observation of shift exercise ‘Oscar’ in conjunction with the station’s Independent Nuclear Assurance function, to assess the improvements made by Torness at an interim point between the most recent and the next demonstration emergency exercises.

Interventions carried out by ONR

This compliance inspection against LC11 - ‘Emergency Arrangements’ used ONR guidance document NS-INSP-GD-011 Revision 4.

This intervention also included a progress review meeting of previously identified ONR issues and EdF actions, as well as a meeting to discuss scheduled inspections during the planned outage of reactor 1 in April 2017.

Explanation of judgement if safety system not judged to be adequate

No safety system inspection was undertaken; hence this is not applicable.

Key findings, inspector's opinions and reasons for judgements made

Further to the level 1 demonstration exercise ‘Hector’ on 4 May 2016, the nominated site inspector observed Torness’ peer assessed exercise of 20 December 2016, which was judged to be appropriate and suitably challenging to evaluate the station’s improvements in the implementation of emergency arrangements.

The nominated site inspector observed a wide range of emergency response teams in different areas of the plant, as well as the final feedback meeting during which the station and EdF’s internal assessment team (IAT) provided detailed ‘area by area’ feedback on the performance of response teams.

Overall, the nominated site inspector judged that Torness, through extensive training and shift exercises, is continuing to address the weaknesses (cultural and realism) that were identified during the level 1 exercise Hector.  Further improvements in several  areas should also improve the effectiveness of command and control during the station’s response to emergencies.

Based on the areas observed, and noting that this ‘peer assessed’ emergency exercise was not a demonstration exercise, but an opportunity for INA and ONR to observe improvements made by Torness at an interim point between the most recent and the next demonstration exercises, the nominated site inspector judged that Torness is continuing to improve the implementation of its emergency arrangements.  The nominated site inspector has therefore assigned a licence condition 11 inspection rating of green.

Conclusion of Intervention

The nominated site inspector considers that shift exercise ‘Oscar’ provided sufficient challenge to test Torness’ implementation of emergency arrangements, and is satisfied that Torness is taking the necessary steps to learn from its shift exercises, to identify further improvements, and to address shortfalls identified.

In line with ONR’s inspection rating guide, the nominated site inspector has assigned an inspection rating of ‘green’ to this LC11 inspection.