Office for Nuclear Regulation

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Planned compliance inspection at Dounreay

Executive summary

Purpose of Intervention

This inspection at Dounreay was to judge compliance with arrangements made under three Licence Condition (LC) ) in accordance with the 2017/18 Integrated Intervention Strategy (IIS) for the site to confirm that the licensee is controlling its hazards and complying with its statutory obligations.

Interventions Carried Out by ONR

This inspection included an inspection of the Site's arrangements made under the following LCs:

The inspections were undertaken by the ONR Dounreay site inspectors and were based on examining a sample of the licensee's arrangements and their implementation on site. For LC26 the inspections covered the implementation of those arrangements across three of the operational directorates on site:

For LC27 and LC28, the inspections focussed on the implementation of those arrangements in support of the Dounreay Fast Reactor (DFR) Breeder Fuel Removal (BFR) project within the Reactors Directorate.

Explanation of Judgement if Safety System Not Judged to be Adequate


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

The inspection against LC26 examined how senior managers within the reactors, waste and fuels directorates ensured that the arrangements implemented for the control and conduct of operations were being complied with and, that those arrangements provided the desired outcomes.

We consider that the senior managers interviewed demonstrated adequate arrangements for ensuring the suitable and sufficient control and conduct of operations within their operational areas. Directorate-specific metrics to measure the effectiveness of those arrangements had been developed within the Reactors Directorate, and were being developed within the Waste Directorate; we encouraged the licensee to consider adopting a common process (though not necessarily common metrics) across all directorates. There was evidence of senior management visits on plant conducted at regular intervals with observations and outcomes of discussions with operators captured and reviewed centrally in accordance with a well-defined corporate procedure. There was also evidence presented that demonstrated the application of the corporate process for conducting work-pack reviews as an effective mechanism by which senior management can discharge their accountabilities against the expectations enshrined within ONR's guidance for the control and supervision of operations.

The inspections against LC27 and LC28 were conducted in parallel and were focussed on the implementation of those arrangements within the DFR BFR project. This provided the opportunity to review those aspects of the project that were still under development during the permissioning activities undertaken to support the transition into active commissioning. Overall we considered that the project had adequate arrangements in place for the identification of key safety related equipment and for the associated examination, inspection, maintenance and testing of that equipment.

This inspection also provided an opportunity to conduct a plant visit within D2160 and the DFR Sphere. During this visit we considered there to be a clear demonstration of the implementation of the LC27 and LC28 arrangements on plant.

Conclusion of Intervention

Overall, we consider that the arrangements and their associated implementation for LC26, LC27 and LC28 for the areas inspected met with the required standards and were therefore deemed to be adequate. We did not identify any matter impacting on nuclear safety that required immediate regulatory action.