Office for Nuclear Regulation

Dounreay - Compliance inspections (LC7, LC26)

Executive summary

Purpose of Intervention

The purpose of this inspection was to undertake Licence Condition (LC) compliance inspections at Dounreay Site Restoration Limited (DSRL) in accordance with the 2020/21 Integrated Intervention Strategy (IIS) to confirm that the licensee is controlling its hazards and complying with its statutory obligations.

Interventions Carried Out by ONR

ONR undertook inspections of the site’s arrangements and their implementation against the requirements of the following LCs:

ONR also attended the Public Meeting of the Dounreay Site Stakeholder Group [held via MS Teams].

Explanation of Judgement if Safety System Not Judged to be Adequate


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

The LC7 compliance inspection provided the opportunity to follow up on progress against the improvement areas reported on previous LC7 inspections.  It is clear that DSRL has undertaken a comprehensive programme of work to improve their understanding of the issues discussed to date.  From ONR’s observations, conducted as part of the plant visits scheduled against LC26, ONR is satisfied that DSRL has implemented a number of arrangements that have successfully addressed the principal areas of regulatory focus.  Acknowledging that DSRL has committed to an assurance improvement programme that includes reviewing the current site investigation process, ONR is satisfied that the improvements identified from previous inspections have been achieved and that future inspections against LC7 will now be conducted at a frequency commensurate with ONR’s normal business.  

The LC26 related inspection involved the observation of activities within a number of the key facilities across each of the operational areas on site. These activities ranged from key decommissioning projects, waste operations, essential maintenance, and construction activities.  ONR’s assessment has also considered the observations undertaken since June 2020 to assess the control and supervision of the restart of operations following an extended shutdown period as a result of the Covid-19 pandemic. Overall, ONR is satisfied that DSRL continues to demonstrate adequate control and supervision of its activities. 

Conclusion of Intervention

We consider that the arrangements and their associated implementation for LC7 and LC26 in the areas inspected met with the required standards.  We did not identify any matter impacting on nuclear safety that required any further immediate regulatory action.