Office for Nuclear Regulation

Devonport Royal Dockyard Limited (DRDL) - LC11 Level 1 Demonstration Exercise 2019

Executive summary

Purpose of Intervention

This intervention was a planned inspection of Licence Condition 11 “Emergency Arrangements”, which is one of a series of planned interventions for the Devonport Royal Dockyard Limited (DRDL’s) licensed nuclear site at Devonport, in line with the strategy for regulating the site during 2019/20. 

Interventions Carried Out by ONR

On 4th December 2019, the Office for Nuclear Regulation (ONR) and Defence Nuclear Safety Regulator (DNSR) jointly assessed the annual Level 1 demonstration exercise.  This exercise was intended to demonstrate DRDL’s arrangements, under Licence Condition 11 and Authorisation Condition 11 “Emergency Arrangements”, for dealing with any accident or emergency arising on the site and any subsequent effects.

Explanation of Judgement if Safety System Not Judged to be Adequate

Not applicable.

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

ONR considered that DRDL’s aims and objectives for the emergency exercise were appropriate and that a suitably challenging scenario had been defined.  During its assessment of the emergency exercise, ONR observed a controlled and measured response from both DRDL and Naval Staff. 

Whilst areas for improvement were noted, these were not considered significant by the ONR assessors. Minor shortfalls in activities relating to casualty recovery were identified and a Level 4 Regulatory Issue raised: ‘Casualty Recovery Improvements (LC11)’, to monitor the licensee’s progress in addressing these.

 Taking into account the exercise scenario, ONR considered the exercise to be an adequate demonstration of the site’s emergency arrangements.

Conclusion of Intervention

From the evidence gathered during this intervention, no matters have been identified that are likely to have a significant impact on nuclear safety on the site at this time, and the conclusion is that DRDL would have adequately coped with the incident.