Office for Nuclear Regulation

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Capenhurst Reactive Intervention

Executive summary

Purpose of intervention

The primary purpose was to inspect the licensee’s improvements, across a range of six leadership and management for safety topics, in response to recommendations arising from a previous ONR intervention in 2014.  I also inspected aspects of the licensee’s investigations into two recent events reported to ONR.

Intervention Carried Out by ONR

I was accompanied at this intervention by a ‘leadership and management for safety’ specialist inspector.  The first reactive intervention was to ascertain the progress made by the licensee, in response to the six recommendations arising from an ONR governance and ‘leadership & management for safety’ intervention in 2014.  The topics included in the six recommendations were: strategy, prioritisation of improvements, process safety management, monitoring performance, the annual review of safety process and assurance arrangements.

I also established the progress being made by the licensee’s investigation into two recent enrichment facility events, promptly reported to ONR.

Explanation of Judgement if Safety System Not Judged to be Adequate

Not applicable.

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

The licensee had recently developed a ‘leadership and management for safety’ action plan, which was intended to address the six recommendations arising from the ONR intervention, together with a broader range of governance and ‘leadership and management for safety’ topics, which had arisen from the licensee’s own assessment.

The licensee currently reported limited progress in addressing the range of ‘leadership and management for safety’ topics.  The licensee presented adequate evidence of recognising the importance of addressing these topics, having developed a challenging action plan and hence it was agreed that it would be appropriate for ONR to revisit the licensee’s progress against the range of topics in a further six months.

Regarding the licensee’s response to a fire at an enrichment facility in January 2015, I was content that the licensee continued to rigorously investigate this incident, having commissioned expert specialist fire investigation support, providing valuable support to the licensee’s investigation.  I am content with the licensee’s reported implementation of licence condition 7 incident investigation arrangements.

The licensee’s investigation into a ventilation pipework failure incident at an enrichment facility in February 2015, was similarly being rigorously investigated by the licensee, taking due account of the potential for a similar event across the site enrichment facilities and conducting experimental work to determine the root cause of this incident.  I am content that the licensee is adequately implementing the licence condition 7 investigation arrangements.

Conclusion of Intervention

In my judgement, the licensee’s current response to the six recommendations arising from the earlier ONR intervention on leadership and management for safety topics was adequate.  The licensee had developed a programme to respond to the recommendations, although the programme for addressing the recommendations was a protracted programme, meaning that only limited actions had been completed at the time of this intervention.  It was agreed that ONR would review the licensee’s progress in a further six months.  An intervention rating of ‘3’ was therefore considered appropriate for this intervention.

The licensee demonstrated adequate implementation of the licence condition 7 incident investigation arrangements, warranting an intervention rating of “3” for this intervention.