Office for Nuclear Regulation

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Planned licence compliance inspection covering LC7 at Sellafield

Executive summary

Purpose of Intervention

In accordance with the Office for Nuclear Regulation’s (ONR’s) Sellafield Strategy, each year ONR performs a series of planned compliance inspections of selected licence conditions, targeted at those facilities with significant importance to nuclear safety.

One such licence condition inspection was performed to assess the Thermal Oxide Reprocessing Plant (THORP) and Oxide Fuel Storage Group (OFSG) compliance with Sellafield Ltd’s (SL) corporate arrangements for Licence Condition (LC) 7 (Incidents on the Site).  Licence Condition 7 (LC7) requires SL to make and implement adequate arrangements for the notification, recording, investigation and reporting of such incidents occurring on the site.

Interventions Carried Out by ONR

The THORP and OFSG site inspector carried out the one day planned compliance inspection against LC 7.  This comprised discussions with SL personnel, reviews of SL records, documents and processes.

Explanation of Judgement if Safety System Not Judged to be Adequate

N/A as this was not a safety systems inspection.

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

Clear evidence was seen that THORP and OFSG had continued to embed use of the improved corporate arrangements for LC 7 since the last inspection in 2016. I sampled Condition Reports to confirm that they were appropriately sentenced, investigated, appropriate corrective actions raised and their effectiveness reviewed. Metric dashboards are being used effectively to assist proactive governance to ensure that investigations are undertaken in a timely manner and resulting actions completed to time. Evidence was seen that THORP and OFSG are making use of OPEX intelligence to drive improvement.

Evidence was seen of the effective mentoring and quality assurance role that both the Corporate Performance Improvement Team and the THORP and OFSG Corrective Action Programme Advisor are performing during the interim period whilst investigators are being training up.

Conclusion of Intervention

From the evidence sampled during the inspection, I consider that SL has effectively implemented its arrangements for compliance with LC 7 and I have assigned an inspection rating of Green (No formal action) to be appropriate for compliance against LC 7; incidents on the site. In the inspection debrief I noted that it was important that THORP and OFSG continue to learn from incidents and complete the training programme for investigators.