Office for Nuclear Regulation

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Compliance Inspection of Licence Condition 26 (Control and Supervision of Operations) at Magnox Swarf Storage Silo, Sellafield

Executive summary

Purpose of Intervention

The Office for Nuclear Regulation (ONR) undertakes all regulatory interaction with the Sellafield site licensee (Sellafield Ltd, SL) against a strategy defined by the ONR Sellafield, Decommissioning, Fuel and Waste Division.  In accordance with this strategy, a Licence Condition (LC) 26 (Control and Supervision of Operations) compliance inspection of the Magnox Swarf Storage Silo (MSSS), part of SL’s Decommissioning Directorate, was carried out on 22 August 2017.

This planned inspection was undertaken to determine if the MSSS facility is adequately implementing SL’s site-wide arrangements for compliance with LC26. The MSSS facility was chosen because of the radiological hazard associated with the waste inventory and because the facility is preparing to conduct waste retrieval operations.

Interventions Carried Out by ONR

LC26 requires the licensee to ensure that no operations are carried out which may affect safety except under the control and supervision of suitably qualified and experienced persons appointed for that purpose by the licensee.

ONR carried out a one-day, on-site inspection of MSSS against the requirements of LC26.  The inspection was carried out by the Sellafield Decommissioning Site Inspector and the Corporate Inspector.

The inspection comprised discussions with SL staff, sampling of plant operational and administrative records and examination of an ongoing maintenance task. The inspection was carried out in accordance with the following ONR inspection and assessment guidance:

Explanation of Judgement if Safety System Not Judged to be Adequate

Not applicable as this was not a system based inspection.

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

I observed a number of good practices in SL’s implementation of its compliance arrangements for LC26 at MSSS.  This included:

I also found a number of minor shortfalls. These included:

I have raised regulatory issues to track the completion of actions by SL to address these shortfalls.

Conclusion of Intervention

On balance, from the evidence sampled during this inspection, I consider that SL has adequately implemented its arrangements for compliance with LC26 in MSSS, with only minor shortfalls identified when compared with appropriate benchmarks.  Therefore, it is my opinion that an inspection rating of ‘Green’ (No formal action) is merited.