Office for Nuclear Regulation

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High Level Waste Plants - LC7 - Incidents on Site - Compliance Inspection

Executive summary

Purpose of Intervention

The purpose of this intervention was to carry out licence compliance inspections on the High Level Waste Plants (HLWP) on the Sellafield Ltd site in line with the planned inspection programme contained in the Operational Waste Facility (OWF-PP5) Integrated Intervention Strategy (IIS) for 2017/18. 

Interventions Carried Out by ONR

I, the OWF site inspector carried out a planned Licence Condition (LC) compliance inspection against LC7 - incidents on site.  I also attended a meeting to discuss progress on ONR regulatory issue 5084 relating to the management of ageing assets on the Highly Active Liquor Evaporation and Storage (HALES) plant. 

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

 Prior to this inspection, I carried out a review of the company LC7 procedures against the relevant ONR guidance documents for these licence conditions.  I judged that these procedures provide adequate arrangements to satisfy the requirements of LC7.

In order to judge the adequacy of the implementation of the LC7 arrangements, I targeted the area of investigations and sampled two management investigations and a basic cause investigation. For each of these investigations I confirmed that the correct process had been followed. 

I also reviewed the training given to these investigators.  I noted that the lead investigators for the investigations I sampled had undertaken training, although this was some time ago. Sellafield has already noted that, although a number of individuals had undertaken investigator training, there was still a shortfall in this area.  A training course is scheduled for the end of June to address this and the lead investigators identified above will also be attending.  In order to track progress with this I have raised a level 4 Regulatory issue (ONR Issue 5406) for Sellafield to supply me with a list of those individuals within HLWP who have undertaken recent investigator training and those who are scheduled to undertake it with the associated timescales.  I will monitor progress with this issue through normal regulatory business.

Notwithstanding the minor comments above, on the basis of the areas sampled I judged that compliance with LC7 followed the relevant company procedures and met the required standard and therefore I have rated this intervention against LC7 as Green.

I also attended a meeting to discuss progress with ONR regulatory issue 5084 relating to the management of ageing assets within HALES.  The purpose of this meeting was for Sellafield to explain the current asset management arrangements within HALES. Based on the information provided I am satisfied that Sellafield has adequately addressed this aspect of regulatory issue 5084.

The intervention was performed in line with ONR’s guidance requirements (as described in our technical inspection guides) in the areas inspected.

Conclusion of Intervention

From the evidence gathered during this intervention, I do not consider there to be any matters that have the potential to impact significantly on nuclear safety.    

At present, no additional regulatory action is needed over and above the planned interventions within the High Level Waste Plants at the Sellafield Nuclear Site as set out in the Integrated Intervention Strategy, which will continue as planned.