Office for Nuclear Regulation

Fire Safety inspection

Executive summary

Purpose of Intervention

This was a planned inspection of EDF Energy Nuclear Generation Ltd.’s (NGL’s) Hinkley Point B power station, undertaken as part of the planned intervention strategy for the Operating Facilities Division (OFD) of the Office for Nuclear Regulation (ONR).

The work was carried out was in-line with the planned inspection programme contained in the Hinkley Point B Integrated Intervention Strategy (IIS).

The purpose of this intervention was to ensure that the Licensee was showing compliance with the requirements of the Regulatory Reform (Fire Safety) Order 2005.

Interventions Carried Out by ONR

The intervention focused on both the management of fire safety and the practical fire safety provision within selected areas and facilities across the site. I informed the licensee that this inspection would focus on the conditions that relate to normal generating conditions.

During a meeting I assessed the approach being taken to the management, testing and maintenance of the fire safety systems across the site. I used the relevant legislation relating to this inspection to focus on life fire safety not nuclear fire safety issues. During my inspection:-  

I also undertook a walk-through of the Turbine Hall building, Reactor Building and the Main Stores building. I paid particular attention to the practical application of the fire safety strategy. I took the opportunity throughout the walk down phase of my inspection to identify examples of obstacles and fire safety issues that were likely to compromise the application of the existing fire safety strategy.

Explanation of Judgement if Safety System Not Judged to be Adequate


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

My overall impression was one of a fire safety team which applies a robust approach to fire safety, ensuring that it is taken seriously and is given the due consideration it deserves. I am of the opinion that senior managers have identified fire as a significant hazard at Hinkley Point B Power Station site and those persons that work within it. Throughout the inspection I noted that all of those that I had contact with, all demonstrated a suitable focus, support and attention to fire safety.

During both the walk down and the meetings held during the day I identified a number of examples of industry good practice. I did identify one aspect of fire safety which will be included on the ONR Issues Database. This is a minor administrative issue. A small number of areas for minor improvements and recommendations aiming to further enhance the already high standards of fire safety will be followed up with the licensee’s Fire Safety Coordinator (FSC).

Notwithstanding the single minor issue, it is my opinion that my inspection has provided me with confidence that the fire safety arrangements are effective and being implemented to a satisfactory standard. The inspection overarching impression was one of a good direction of travel and a high level of importance being placed on the provision of the required standards for conventional fire safety arrangements.

Conclusion of Intervention

I concluded with an assessment of compliance with the legislation, and presented deficiencies and recognised areas of good practice at a wash-up meeting.

Overall my findings in relation to the areas I inspected, demonstrate a good level of fire safety provision and management. The FSC understands that in order for the fire safety strategy that is in place at Hinkley Point B to achieve its goal, it is necessary that all members of staff are aware of the strategy and the rationale behind it.

The inspection was rated as GREEN as there were no significant issues identified.