Office for Nuclear Regulation

Compliance inspection - Transport of Radioactive Materials

Executive summary

ONR regulates the civil transport of radioactive material by road, rail and inland waterway in Great Britain (GB). The ONR Transport Competent Authority (TCA) is responsible for delivering non-nuclear transport inspection and enforcement activities. This particular inspection forms part of that delivery function with reference to Carriage of Dangerous Goods and Use of Transportable Pressure Equipment Regulations 2009 (CDG), the Ionising Radiations Regulations 2017 (IRR17) and the Radiation (Emergency Preparedness and Public Information) Regulations 2019 (REPPIR19). CDG refers to the European Agreement concerning the International Carriage of Dangerous Goods by Road (ADR) and ONR used ADR 2019 during this inspection (

Purpose of Intervention

The purpose of the inspection was to review University Hospitals Bristol and Weston (UHBW) NHS Foundation Trust’s arrangements associated with the road transport of radioactive material. ONR carried out this inspection remotely via MS Team on 24 November 2020.

Interventions Carried Out by ONR

The chosen inspection sample included:

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

The inspector sampled the arrangements deployed by UHBW for the safe transport of radioactive materials, including the associated arrangements for protecting workers against the effects of ionising radiations and reducing risks as low as reasonably practicable (ALARP). 

The inspector compared relevant statutory requirements with both prescribed arrangements and actual practice.  The inspector identified a number of examples of the duty holder meeting relevant good practice in reducing risk to levels that are ALARP, including driver training, transport documentation, radiation monitoring and vehicle management. The inspector identified one non-compliances and discussed this during the inspection, which included the need to update the radiation risk assessment and consider the need for emergency plans.

During the inspection, the inspector also suggested certain improvements to transport practices that would be prudent for UHBW to consider.

Conclusion of Intervention

 UHBW demonstrated that for certain aspects of its operations it met the requirements of CDG, ADR and IRR17. Based on the inspection sample, the inspector identified one non-compliance with relevant legislation and suggested two improvements. The inspector discussed these during the inspection and UHBW gave a commitment to address them.

The inspector gave UHBW until 22 Jan 2020 to provide ONR either with evidence that the findings have been resolved, or an appropriate resolution plan with timescales for completion.

For this intervention, the inspector gave an inspection rating GREEN, due to there being Relatively minor, if any, deficiencies in compliance arrangements.

UHBW has already taken action to address the non-compliance regarding radiation risk assessments and emergency arrangements.

ONR will monitor the identified non-compliances through its Issues Management arrangements.