Office for Nuclear Regulation

Sellafield Fire on October 22nd 2021

Date released
3 February 2022
Request number


Release of information under
Freedom of Information Act 2000 (FOIA)

Information requested

Please could you disclose all data around the incident on October 22nd 2021 that involved a fire at a building associated with the Magnox Plant.

This incident is referenced here: Sellafield Ltd incident reports and notices.

Please could this request include disclosure of such data - including but but limited to - the nature of the fire, how many firefighters dealt with the incident, how long it took to get the fire under control and the effects of this fire on the operation of the Magnox Plant and the storage of material.

Information released

We confirm that under Section 1 of the FOIA, we hold the information relevant to your request.

Please find attached 14 documents which were in scope of your request.

Some information has been withheld because it contains personal data. This includes names, job titles, and contact details. The personal data has been withheld using the exemption section 40(2) of the FOIA. In particular, release of the information would breach principle (a) of GDPR (lawfulness, fairness and transparency) on the grounds that there is no lawful basis to process this data. In addition, releasing this personal data would also breach principle (b) of GDPR (purpose limitation) as the data was provided for the purposes of internal circulation or to assist with the subsequent investigation after the event.

As we set out in our earlier response to you on 6 January 2022 (our unique reference: 2021/92307), we have also considered the following exemption of the FOIA to this document.

Some information is being withheld under the following sections of the FOIA:

Section 24 FOIA; Safeguarding national security (ICO Guidance)

This exemption applies where withholding the information requested is required for the purposes of safeguarding national security. It works to protect national security, which includes protection of potential targets. It allows a public authority not to disclose information if it considers releasing the information would make the UK or its citizens more vulnerable to a national security threat.

As this is a qualified exemption, we are required to balance the public interest between disclosure and non-disclosure.  We have therefore applied the Public Interest Test, as set out below:

Section 24 FOIA – Safeguarding national security

Factors for disclosure:

Factors against disclosure:

Exemptions applied

Section 40(2) and Section 24 FOIA.

PIT (Public Interest Test) if applicable

Yes please see above.