Office for Nuclear Regulation

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Planned licence compliance inspection covering LC24 - Operating Instructions

Executive summary

Purpose of Intervention

The Office for Nuclear Regulation (ONR) undertakes all regulatory interactions with the Sellafield site licensee (Sellafield Limited, (SL)) against a strategy defined by the ONR Sellafield Sub Division. This planned intervention was undertaken as part of the ONR 2019/20 Intervention Plan.

Purpose of Intervention

This a planned core licence condition inspection was carried out to determine the adequacy of THORP’s implementation of the SL corporate arrangements for compliance with licence condition (LC) 24 – Operating instructions, at the Thermal Oxide Reprocessing Plant (THORP) at Sellafield.

Interventions Carried Out by ONR

We, the THORP and Oxide Fuel Storage Group (OFSG) Site Inspector, a Human Factors Specialist Inspector and a Trainee Inspector carried out a one day licence condition compliance inspection against LC24, Operating instructions. This comprised reviewing a sample of LC24 related records/documentation, a visit to the Central Control Room, a discussion with a THORP Safety Representative and discussions with personnel responsible for implementing the LC24 corporate arrangements.

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

From the inspection sample we found that THORP has adequately implemented the Sellafield Limited (SL) corporate LC24 arrangements;

Although THORP demonstrated compliance with LC24, during discussions with THORP staff  there was concern expressed that THORP may not be adequately resourced to maintain compliance with LC24 as the facility transitions at the end of its operational life; the Site Inspector will follow up on this at future interventions.

We identified minor shortfalls in the corporate arrangements in relation to records for LC24 which the Site Inspector will forward to the ONR Corporate Inspectors.

Conclusion of Intervention

On the basis of the evidence gathered during the inspection, we judge that an inspection rating of GREEN is warranted for LC24.