Office for Nuclear Regulation

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LC 35 Compliance Inspection – Infrastructure Inactive Tank Farm, Sellafield

Executive summary

Purpose of Intervention

The Office for Nuclear Regulation (ONR) undertakes all regulatory interactions with Sellafield Limited (SL), the site licensee, against a strategy defined by the ONR Sellafield, Decommissioning, Fuel and Waste (SDFW) Division.  The planned inspection schedule for the current regulatory year (covering April 2018 – March 2019), the content of which is guided by that strategy, identifies the Licence Conditions (LCs) that will be inspected over this period.

This planned intervention was undertaken to determine if SL’s Inactive Tank Farm is adequately implementing the licensee’s site-wide arrangements for compliance with Licence Condition 35 - Decommissioning.  Although the Inactive Tank Farm has limited direct claims placed on it for the purpose of nuclear safety it has an important duty role. It supports several operations on the Sellafield site that are important to nuclear safety and the high hazard and risk reduction activities. 

The overall adequacy of SL's site-wide LC35 arrangements is considered separately in other ONR inspections.

Interventions Carried Out by ONR

LC35 requires the licensee to make and implement adequate arrangements for the decommissioning of any plant or process which may affect safety.

My inspection, which comprised discussions with licensee staff, examination of plant documentation, and inspection of its facilities, focussed on SL’s arrangements to:

Explanation of Judgement if Safety System Not Judged to be Adequate

Not applicable; this was not a safety system based inspection.

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

There were no significant findings identified during my inspection, and I have not raised any associated Regulatory Issues.

I consider conducting this inspection has been timely and meaningful in focusing the licensee on its LC35 duties and responsibilities. 

SL demonstrated an adequate understanding of the site-wide LC35 arrangements. Overall, I consider that SL has adequately implemented its arrangements for compliance with LC35 within its Inactive Tank Farm facility.  Indeed, the implementation is good in several areas, for example through establishing an adequate understanding of its customer requirements.  However, this is offset by the need to establish an auditable approved strategy.  For these reasons, on balance I consider an inspection rating of Green (no formal action) is merited against LC 35 as a result of this inspection.

Conclusion of Intervention

As I found no significant shortfalls, on balance, I consider an inspection rating of Green (no formal action) is merited against LC35 as a result of this inspection.

My findings were shared with and accepted by the licensee as part of normal inspection feedback.