The purpose of this intervention was to carry out an inspection of Magnox's arrangements for managing asbestos containing materials (ACMs) and work with ACMs at the Trawsfynydd site. There are approximately 5000 deaths from asbestos related diseases in the UK each year. Of these people dying, 25% are tradesmen such as builders, plumbers, carpenters and electricians. This equates to 20 tradesmen each week. Hence, managing and working with ACMs is a priority nuclear site health topic.
During the visit an emerging issue with regards to the control of a substance hazardous to health was discussed, specifically relating to ongoing roof work.
In addition the opportunity was taken to discuss a recent report of procedures on site not being followed in relation to pre use checks on fork lift trucks
An introductory meeting was completed, during which the general arrangements with regards to conventional health and safety were described. This included; general policies in place, organisational structure, metrics and current initiatives.
The lead asbestos competent person for the Trawsfynydd site provided an overview and presentation as to how ACM's are manged on site. This included; the site asbestos inventory, key personnel involved with asbestos management on site and the controls in place.
Checks were made at a variety of locations across the Trawsfynydd site against these arrangements and the regulatory requirements. Personnel from the site's contractors for asbestos removal and inspections / surveying were also seen.
During the site walk down an issue emerged regarding the control of a substance hazardous to health, specifically relating to ongoing roof work. The controls in place were considered and compared to the regulatory requirements of the Control of Substances Hazardous to Health Regulations.
A brief meeting was held in relation to ongoing enquires being completed by site in relation to a recent report of site personnel not completing pre use checks on fork lift trucks.
With regards to asbestos, Trawsfynydd generally have adequate measures in place with some evidence of relevant good practice, such as personal monitoring for all asbestos works.
In the main, the site have completed the appropriate surveys for ACM's with reasoned arguments accepted for where there are gaps i.e. ongoing removal works or higher radiological risks.
Advice was given with regards to the site completing an effectiveness review on the current asbestos awareness training package and the provision of pre-construction information. The strategic approach for end state ACM's as the site enters care and maintenance was also discussed. This is a matter that will be further followed up at a corporate level with Magnox.
With regards to the emerging issue in relation to the control of a substance hazardous to health for the ongoing roof work, it was not entirely clear if the controls in place were to the appropriate level.
The site response was as expected in a mature duty holder, in that without prompt the work was paused until this could be clarified. Advice was given as to how best to do this with the site committing to respond to ONR on what actions have been completed
With regards to pre use checks on fork lift truck and the ongoing enquires, advice was given to site on what should be included in their enquiries, including; training, authorisation and audit.
There are no findings from this intervention that suggests the risks presented from asbestos are not being adequately controlled. The site were able to demonstrate several areas of good practice and took all advice offered in a positive manner
With regards to the roof work and the unclear position as to the controls in place, ONR are comfortable that the site has responded in the correct manner. A commitment was agreed where the site would forward the resolution to ONR, however an amber rating has been applied as there should be no confusion as to the required controls when using substances hazardous to health.