Office for Nuclear Regulation

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Heysham 1 - Engineering Governance Intervention

Executive summary

Purpose of Intervention

This intervention was undertaken to evaluate the governance arrangements of EDF Energy Nuclear Generation Limited (NGL) Heysham 1's Engineering Department, being one of a number of interventions to be carried out at all NGL nuclear sites and the corporate centre.

Interventions Carried Out by ONR

An engineering governance thematic based intervention was undertaken by a team of ONR inspectors using ONR technical inspection guides to evaluate Heysham 1 performance against Licence Condition (LC) 12 - Duly authorised and other suitably qualified and experienced persons and LC 17 - Management systems.

The intervention focused on:

The thematic intervention used a series of structured discussions with System Engineers, Engineering Department Group Heads and Senior Managers as well as plant walkdowns to evaluate the effectiveness of engineering governance processes.

With regard to the LC 12 and LC 17 aspects of this inspection we found no significant issues and therefore assigned a rating of green.

During this visit the Nominated Site Inspector also undertook a number of information gathering interventions as part of normal regulatory business. These included a review of incidents reported to ONR under the site's Licence Conditions and an update on progress with regulatory issues.

Explanation of Judgement if Safety System Not Judged to be Adequate

Section not applicable as no safety system based inspection was undertaken.

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

In the case of adequacy of engineering department resource and training, the team found that Heysham 1 Engineering Department nuclear baseline requirement of twenty eight staff did not align with the Department's current cadre of thirty nine. Training of system engineers was considered to be adequate although in our opinion system specific training could be strengthened. We found that suitable governance processes were in place to ensure NGL standards are being met.

In the case of demonstrating compliance with equipment reliability practices and processes, we judged Heysham 1 was compliant. However some shortfalls have been found by the Station's own self-assessment of the plant walk-down process, for which corrective actions have been identified.

System compliance with Company Technical Standards and guidance (CTSs & TGNs) was reviewed by engineers but lacked visibility on station.

The team found that differences existed in how terms of reference were met in determining the effectiveness Heysham 1's system review board (SRB) and plant health committee (PHC) for monitoring risks from systems, projects delivery and mitigation. However we found the SRB and PHC to be functional and supported by the input of information from other Station processes including investment delivery and the project board supporting Station top ten challenges.

We were told that the central technical organisation (CTO) support to the Station was effective and proactive in addressing engineering challenges and promoting consistency in equipment reliability process including audits. However, we found CTO to have a limited influence in driving consistency and adherence to standards implementation through monitoring and audit.

In respect of reporting and investigating incidents occurring on the site the Nominated Site Inspector found no matters concern, that in his opinion, require further regulatory action at this time. With respect to ONR regulatory issues, progress is in general being made with a number of issues being closed out since the previous review. There are no concerns of significance that require issues to be escalated at this time.

Conclusion of Intervention

Heysham 1 Engineering Department engineering governance was considered adequate. A small number of areas for improvement were identified and these have already been recognised by the Station with associated corrective actions. The team judged that some improvements could be made in the area of demonstrating compliance with NGL's technical standards, which will be taken up with the Corporate Centre through the Fleet and Chief Engineering Manager.