Office for Nuclear Regulation

LC 07 Inspection THORP

Executive summary

Purpose of intervention

The purpose of this intervention was for the Office for Nuclear Regulation (ONR) to undertake a routine Licence Condition (LC) inspection to assess Sellafield Ltd's Thermal Oxide Reprocessing Plant (THORP) compliance with LC7 - Incidents on the site.

Interventions carried Out by ONR

ONR carried out a routine compliance inspection against LC7 in THORP.

In addition ONR held a meeting with the Head of THORP to discuss manning levels in the THORP Control Room.

ONR also held an information sharing session with relevant specialist Sellafield Limited staff to inform an upcoming system based inspection of the THORP Ponds.

Explanation of judgement if safety system not judged to be adequate


Key findings, Inspector's opinions and reasons for judgements made

I considered that while the essential elements of the processes supporting LC7 compliance are well established and generally effectively implemented, improved management and central support focus, in addition to reducing the number of 'overdues', would be beneficial to aid THORP in improving the consistency and quality of investigations and completion of actions.

With regards to manning levels in the THORP Control Room, I am content that Sellafield Limited is currently addressing manning concerns appropriately. I informed Sellafield Limited that I would be seeking an update on the progress made by the THORP Control Room improvement project including an update on how effective these measures have been in reducing periods of operating at minimum manning in due course.

Conclusion of intervention

Overall based on the sampling undertaken I considered that Sellafield Limited had demonstrated that the implementation of Sellafield Limited's arrangements for compliance with LC7 is adequate, thereby deserving a rating of 3 - Adequate.