Office for Nuclear Regulation

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Spring fields Fuels Limited- Intervention to inspect the implementation of arrangements for the control and supervision of contractors

Executive summary

Purpose of intervention

A reactive intervention was made at Springfields, to inspect the implementation of licence condition 26 arrangements for control and supervision, as well as licence condition 35 arrangements for decommissioning.

Intervention Carried Out by ONR

An intervention, by the nominated site inspector and an ONR conventional safety specialist inspector, of the implementation of the licensee's control and supervision arrangements, focused on the control and supervision of contractors working on the site. Aspects inspected included the arrangements for the selection of contractors, for the management of term contractors, together with a plant inspection of a combined decommissioning and equipment installation project, being undertaken by contractors. A safety representative was consulted during the intervention. This reactive inspection was arranged in response to some shortfalls observed earlier in 2014, in the licensee's control and supervision of contractors engaged on asbestos removal work, as part of a plant decommissioning project, where an asbestos removal contractor was asked to cease work, due to concerns raised about the way in which removal of asbestos pipe lagging was being conducted. Extensive regulatory advice was provided during this inspection, including regarding some shortfalls in the provision of Local Rules, (a requirement of The Ionising Radiations Regulations 1999) observed during the plant inspection.

Explanation of Judgement if Safety System Not Judged to be Adequate

Not applicable on this occasion.

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

ONR inspected aspects of the licensee's arrangements for the control and supervision of contractors, and their implementation, at a facility undergoing decommissioning and construction.

Whilst the licensee's arrangements and their implementation were found to be generally adequate, regulatory advice was provided during the inspection, which would enable the licensee to enhance the arrangements for the control and supervision of the broad range of contractors working on the site. The licensee readily agreed to consider the regulatory advice provided and will then provide a timely response to ONR, regarding the advised enhancements.

The licensee was engaged in a programme of improving the Local Rules across the plants on the site. Some shortfalls were observed at the facility inspected and the licensee agreed to promptly remedy the shortfall in the provision of Local Rules at this facility.

Conclusion of Intervention

On balance, I concluded that the licensee's implementation of control and supervision arrangements for contractors working on the site, together with aspects of the implementation of decommissioning arrangements, were both adequate. The licensee's implementation of Local Rules was considered to be below standard and the licensee agreed to address this shortfall. The consultation with the safety representative was productive.