Office for Nuclear Regulation

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Planned compliance inspections of LC10 - Training and LC26 - Control and supervision of operations

Executive summary

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

These planned core licence condition (LC) inspections were carried out to determine the adequacy of SL’s implementation of its corporate arrangements for compliance with LC10, Training and LC26, Control and supervision of operations, at the Highly Active Liquor Evaporation and Storage (HALES) Facility at Sellafield.

Interventions Carried Out by ONR

I, the THORP and OFSG Site Inspector, carried out a one day LC compliance inspection against LC10, Training and a half day inspection against LC26, Control and supervision of operations at the HALES Facility. I was supported by the Operational Waste Facilities Site Inspector; also in attendance were the Operational Waste Facilities Site Inspector (Designate) and a Safeguards Inspector. The LC10 inspection comprised a review of LC10 related documentation and records, and discussions with personnel responsible for implementing the LC10 corporate arrangements. The LC26 inspection included a visit to the HALES Facility, observation of the Plant Operations Control Centre (POCC) Meeting, a review of the Duly Authorised Person’s (DAP) Log, observation of an operation (including an inspection of the associated written instruction) and an inspection of the training records of those persons conducting the operation.

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

For LC10, I inspected the training records of one DAP, one Appointed Suitably Qualified and Experienced Person (ASQEP) and one operator. I was satisfied with the training records for these individuals; to support the LC26 inspection planned for the following day, I also inspected the record of the Suitably Qualified and Experienced Person (SQEP) Assessment Panel undertaken for one of the DAPs on shift for the LC26 Inspection, I was satisfied that the assessment panel had met the criteria set out in SL’s arrangements. I also sampled evidence of the training package developed for Evaporator D, and was satisfied that this had been produced in accordance with the SL LC10 arrangements. I asked to see the minutes of the training governance meetings held to support the LC10 arrangements; I was advised that minutes had not been produced for these meetings; however, a new training team in place at the HALES Facility had recognised this shortfall and plans to minute these meetings in the future. In the overall context of the requirements of LC10, I consider this a minor shortfall, but have raised a regulatory issue to address this matter and to seek assurance that the HALES Facility is fully compliant with the site’s LC10 arrangements.  

For LC26 I found that operations were adequately controlled and supervised by the DAPs. The POCC Meeting was attended by key personnel and was effective, with engaged personnel and good three way communications. The operator in Evaporator D was trained, and I saw evidence that operations were being conducted with written instructions. I undertook an inspection of the Minimum Safe Manning Levels on a sample basis, and was satisfied, based on this sample, that Minimum Safe Manning had been achieved for the shift inspected.

Conclusion of Intervention

On the basis of the evidence gathered during the inspection, and notwithstanding the minor shortfall in relation to the governance meeting minutes for which a regulatory issue has been raised, I judge that the HALES Facility has adequately implemented the arrangements for LC10 and LC26 and merits an assessment rating of Green. The Head of Operations for the HALES Facility confirmed that the regulatory issue was understood.