Office for Nuclear Regulation

Dounreay Compliance Inspection

Executive summary

Purpose of intervention

I carried out planned licence condition (LC) 12 and 26 inspections in accordance with the 2015/16 integrated inspection strategy (IIS) for Dounreay, to provide confidence that the licensee is controlling its hazards properly and complying with its statutory obligations. 

I also carried out a planned Management of Health and Safety at Work (MHSW) regulations inspection.  In October 2014 a fire occurred adjacent to one of the tanks in the PFR sodium tank farm, following which ONR issued an Improvement Notice on the basis of a breach of MHSW regulations.  The purpose of this inspection was to provide evidence that the licensee had complied with that notice.

Interventions Carried Out by ONR

I inspected:

Explanation of Judgement if Safety System Not Judged to be Adequate


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

I consider that the licensee’s arrangements enable it to demonstrate adequate control and supervision of operations that may affect safety.  Further, I am content that the licensee has and is implementing processes to ensure that staff in DFR and PFR are SQEP both for the role they have been employed for, and for the specific tasks they are undertaking. 

I consider that the licensee is able to demonstrate adequate control (through the work planning process) and supervision (through the appointment of SQEP project supervisors) of operations affecting safety in the DFR and PFR.

The licensee has made significant changes to the way alkali metals work is planned and delivered since the sodium tank farm fire, based not just on ONR’s Improvement Notice but also on their own investigation and review of past experience.  The licensee also has given due consideration to how the changes can be sustained in the long term.  Overall I am satisfied that the licensee is now complying with the requirements of the MHSW regulations.

Conclusion of Intervention

I did not identify any matter impacting on nuclear safety that required immediate regulatory action.  On the basis that I consider the licensee to be compliant with the MHSW regulations, I also recommend that the issue on ONR’s database relating to the Improvement Notice be considered for closure at the next meeting of the Delivery Management Group.