Office for Nuclear Regulation

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Torness Power Station - Annual Review of Safety and Licence Condition Compliance Inspections covering LC23 and LC 24

Executive summary

Purpose of intervention

The purpose of this intervention was to conduct an Annual Review of Safety and Licence Condition (LC) compliance inspections at EDF Energy Nuclear Generation Limited's (NGL's) Torness Power Station in line with the planned inspection programme contained in the Torness Integrated Intervention Strategy (IIS).

Those aspects of this intervention relevant to the Annual Review of Safety at the Torness nuclear licensed site were undertaken by three ONR inspectors, including a Superintending Inspector. The purpose was to review station performance over the reporting period and obtain reports from the Licensee on planned improvements and significant projects considered necessary in the next period or in the longer term to gain assurance on continued safe operation.

The ONR nominated site inspectors for Heysham 2 and Torness Power Stations, respectively, performed LC23 and LC24 compliance inspections. This joint inspection on these LCs is to be repeated at Heysham 2 Power Station in March 2015 to enable ONR to gauge consistency of approach to compliance with licence condition compliance arrangements at both stations.

Interventions Carried Out by ONR

This intervention enabled ONR to conduct an Annual Review of Safety at Torness Power Station in accordance with ONR guidance document NS-INSP-GD-058. This requires inspectors to review station performance over the reporting period and obtain reports on planned improvements and significant projects considered necessary in the next period or in the longer term to gain assurance on continued safe operation.

In addition, this intervention included compliance inspections against the following Licence Conditions (LCs):

This inspection used ONR guidance documents, NS-INSP-GD-023 Rev. 3, T/TAST/035 Issue 3 and NS-INSP-GD-024 Rev. 2 , which require inspectors undertaking compliance inspections against LC23 and LC24, respectively, to consider both the arrangements that are in place together with their associated implementation.

Explanation of Judgement if Safety System Not Judged to be Adequate

No safety system inspection was undertaken hence this is not applicable.

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

The Annual Review of Safety comprised a walkdown of the plant and a formal review meeting with the Torness Power Station management team and departmental group heads. This review, which covered the period 1 January 2013 to 1 January 2014, was delayed until after completion of the Reactor 1 statutory outage and consequently relevant aspects of station performance during 2014 to date were also considered.

This Annual review of Safety was performed in line with ONR's guidance requirements as described in technical inspection guide NS-INSP-GD-058 Rev. 2.

The ONR team deemed that the Annual Review of Safety provided an adequate review of performance at Torness Power Station for 2013 whilst noting that a deferred Reactor 1 statutory outage had been successfully completed in 2014. In addition, presentations were provided on planned projects for continued safe operation and safety improvements that will be implemented during 2014 or in the longer term.

The LC23 inspection considered the adequacy of the arrangements at Torness for the implementation, use and review of operating rules, referred to as Technical Specifications. Specific focus was given to Technical Specifications relevant to reactor heat removal safety function(s) and associated surveillance requirements.

We found that the arrangements for compliance with LC23 reviewed during our inspection provided an effective demonstration of the operating regime at Torness Power Station. The focus on the Technical Specifications associated with the reactor heat removal safety function(s) provided a clear means of establishing alignment between the station safety report, the limits and conditions assigned in relevant Technical Specifications and the actions taken by operators to achieve appropriate levels of essential plant operability for post-trip cooling.

We are satisfied that the implementation of arrangements for compliance with LC23 at Torness Power Station are to an adequate standard and judge that the outcome of the sample inspection undertaken met with relevant expectations in ONR guidance.

The LC24 inspection focussed on the arrangements at Torness Power Station for implementation, use and review of various forms of operating instructions. Specific focus was given to those operating instructions associated with reactor heat removal safety function(s), including those referred to from relevant Technical Specifications and their associated surveillance requirements.

We are satisfied that the implementation of arrangements for compliance with LC24 at Torness Power Station are to an adequate standard and judge that the outcome of the sample inspection undertaken met with relevant expectations in ONR guidance. Our inspection found that there was good alignment between technical specifications and operating instructions and a review of relevant checksheets compiled by operators in the central control room confirmed that the measures applied were being followed correctly in order to establish compliance.

Additionally, in order to establish the use of operating instructions we carried out a random sample of two workface activities that were being performed during our inspection. This identified a shortfall in procedural use and adherence for repetitive tasks that is being addressed by station.

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

Conclusion of Intervention

The ONR team deemed that the Annual Review of Safety provided an adequate review of performance at Torness Power Station for 2013 whilst noting that a deferred Reactor 1 statutory outage had been successfully completed in 2014. In addition, presentations were provided on planned projects for continued safe operation and safety improvements that will be implemented during 2014 or in the longer term.

I am satisfied that the arrangements and their implementation at Torness Power Station for LC23 are to an adequate standard and judge that the outcome of the sample inspection undertaken met with relevant expectations detailed within ONR guidance. I have rated this element of my licence condition compliance inspection with an IIS rating of 3 (adequate).

Similarly, I am satisfied that the arrangements and their implementation at Torness Power Station for LC24 are to an adequate standard and judge that the outcome of the sample inspection undertaken met with the relevant expectations detailed within ONR guidance. I have rated this element of my licence condition compliance inspection with an IIS rating of 3 (adequate).

There are no findings from this inspection that could significantly undermine nuclear safety and no change to the planned interventions and inspections at Torness Power Station.