Office for Nuclear Regulation

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Planning areas re-determined

28 February, 2017

The Office for Nuclear Regulation (ONR) has re-determined the areas around Her Majesty’s Naval Base (HMNB) Clyde (Faslane and Coulport) Authorised Sites and the Loch Goil Operational Berth. These are the areas where local emergency planning is required for the unlikely event of a radiation emergency.

ONR has responsibility for determining these areas under the Radiation (Emergency Preparedness and Public Information) Regulations 2001 (REPPIR). The determination of emergency planning areas is required in order to protect the public in the unlikely event of a radiation emergency.

ONR has reviewed MOD’s latest assessments of the potential risk to the public should there be a radiation accident at the sites and concluded that the basis for emergency planning has not changed since the previous reviews.

However, in order to further improve public protection planning arrangements, the proportionate application of ONR’s revised principles has resulted in small increases to the size of the areas it has determined for HMNB Clyde (Faslane) Authorised Site and the Loch Goil Operational Berth. The area around HMNB Clyde (Coulport) Authorised Site remains unchanged.

The revised areas are where the lead local authority, in this case Argyll and Bute Council, is required to have an emergency plan in place to protect the public. The off-site emergency planning areas for HMNB Clyde (Faslane) Authorised Site and the Loch Goil Operational Berth have been revised from circles with 1.5 km radii, to the following areas:

Donald Urquhart, ONR Director of the Cross ONR Programme, said: “ONR inspectors have reviewed detailed evaluations prepared by the MOD for HMNB Clyde (Faslane and Coulport) Authorised Sites and the Loch Goil Operational Berth. The results of the latest evaluations of the radiation hazards associated with the sites have been compared to previous assessments, and ONR has concluded that the risks identified have not changed the basis for emergency planning.

“By applying our revised principles for determining off-site emergency planning areas in a proportionate manner, we believe that the REPPIR emergency planning areas we have defined are in the best interests of securing public safety and to support practical emergency planning. This is as a result of our work with Argyll and Bute Council and other duty holders to ensure that existing good practice and practical considerations relevant to the area have been taken fully into account.”

ONR has written to Argyll and Bute Council and the operators advising them of the decision. The Council will revise their off-site emergency plan in consultation with the other emergency responders to ensure appropriate arrangements are in place throughout the new areas. REPPIR requires the Council to revise their off-site emergency plan within six months of the determinations (or longer period as ONR may agree in writing).

As part of Argyll and Bute Council’s REPPIR off-site emergency planning requirements, MOD have arrangements in place to provide urgent countermeasures to people living closest to the site if there is an accident. MOD will work closely with Argyll and Bute Council and other responders to ensure that their arrangements continue to complement the local authority emergency plan.

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