Office for Nuclear Regulation

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Planned compliance inspection (LC 11) - Level 1 Demonstration Exercise at Hartlepool

Executive summary

Purpose of Intervention

The purpose of this intervention was to undertake a compliance inspection at EDF Energy Nuclear Generation Limited’s (NGL) Hartlepool power station, in line with the ONR’s inspection programme contained in the Hartlepool Integrated Intervention Strategy for 2018/19.

Interventions Carried Out by ONR

In my capacity of nominated site inspector for Hartlepool Power Station and supported by a team of ONR inspectors, I performed an inspection to examine the licensee’s implementation of its compliance arrangements with regard to Licence Condition (LC) 11 – Emergency Arrangements. 

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

Explanation of Judgement if Safety System Not Judged to be Adequate

No system based inspection was undertaken hence, this is not applicable for this intervention.

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

We considered the scenario to be challenging and suitable for a demonstration of Hartlepool’s emergency arrangements.  The scenario was based upon a significant external event that, as a result of the configuration of the plant and additional preprogramed failures, resulted in the loss of several key cooling systems and the need for ‘beyond design basis’ equipment to be dispatched to the site.

Good levels of command and control were observed in the Emergency Control Centre, but this was not evident in the Access Control Point (ACP).  However, we noted that the location chosen for the ACP was not the primary location and the layout could be further improved to help this.  Team briefings at the ACP were not as complete as expected, however the teams completed their tasks successfully.  Team control and status boards were often lagging the real time situation.

The Beyond Design Basis Equipment was successfully brought on to site and connected to the plant.  However, it took over an hour from arrival on site to do so, which needs to be improved.

Based on the elements of the demonstration observed by ONR and the final achieved result, we judged that the exercise was an adequate demonstration of Hartlepool’s emergency arrangements.

The full range of observations and other learning opportunities will be communicated to the station by a separate letter.

Conclusion of Intervention

There are no findings from this intervention that could undermine nuclear safety at this time.  Therefore, no additional regulatory action is needed over and above the planned interventions at Hartlepool Power Station.