Office for Nuclear Regulation

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Site Inspection to support Reactor Outage Intervention Strategy, focussing on LC17 and incorporating LC26

Executive summary

Purpose of intervention

This was a planned inspection of the Quality Management (QM) arrangements being applied for the 2014 statutory outage at the Hunterston B (HNB) nuclear licensed site.

Interventions Carried Out by ONR

I carried out a planned compliance inspection against Licence Condition (LC17) 'Management Systems' and LC26 Control and Supervision of Operation. This focussed on a review of the adequacy of the outage Quality management arrangements for a range of activities including: audit & surveillance; supply chain and contract management, management of work closure and the control and supervision of a portfolio project during the outage.

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

I found the HNB's compliance with LC17 Management Systems for the areas inspected is good (IIS Rating 2) and consistent with relevant procedures. The LC26 Control and Supervision of Operation based on the areas inspected are judged to be adequate (IIS Rating 3).

The licence conditions were inspected against ONR's published guidance requirements (as described in our technical inspection guides).

I found that there is a risk-based targeting of quality surveillances and that the surveillance programme is being maintained. I noted that the surveillance programme was developed in liaison with the outage control centre team and the Strategic Outage Manager and that there is a standard approach to surveillances to promote consistency. The overall quality team for the outage is a combination of the station quality engineers and the contract partner quality teams.

I observed a well-managed weekly Outage Quality Forum meeting and noted good attendance by contractors and station staff. I noted that the Strategic Outage Manager was in attendance and made constructive interventions. This demonstrated the link between quality and the delivery of outage work.

I discussed work management arrangements for the outage with the outage management team, including the process for work closure and return of plant and systems from maintenance to operations. I was satisfied that there was a robust process for closing work packages and returning plant and systems back into service. I noted the strong management and the holistic integrated team approach being taken to maintenance and operations.

I discussed supply chain management arrangements for the outage and found these to be in accordance with relevant procedures and the pre outage milestone plan.

I examined the contract management arrangements for one of the main contract partners and found these to be adequate and in accordance with procedural requirements. I visited the main contract partner's site office and discussed their arrangements for managing work and found these to be satisfactory. I witnessed a joint contract partner and station quality engineer surveillance of a project installation and was satisfied that the approach was robust and thorough.

I discussed the general arrangements for Portfolio Project Management and was satisfied that there is good organisation and control via the gated 'Investment Delivery Process'. I selected the project I had earlier witnessed surveillance on and found the project to be well managed with good records and good overall quality management arrangements. Appropriate use had been made of previous operational experience.

Field Supervision arrangements on station appeared to be mature with the role understood and implemented in accordance with EDF fleet expectations. Overall standards of control and supervision observed during the inspection period were judged to be adequate.

Conclusion of Intervention

I was satisfied from the activities I sampled that the LC17 Management Systems quality management oversight arrangements for the outage of HNB R4 are good and consistent with the relevant procedures. LC26 Control and Supervision is judged to be adequate based on the sampling undertaken over an extended period. No actions have been raised.