Office for Nuclear Regulation

Sellafield – Inspection ID: 22-048

  • Site: Sellafield
  • IR number: 22-048
  • Date: August 2022
  • LC numbers: N/A

Executive summary

Purpose of Intervention

An inspection of the Box Encapsulation Plant Product Store – Direct Import Facility (BEPPS-DIF) and Box Encapsulation Plant (BEP) construction projects at Sellafield Ltd was undertaken as part of the planned Integrated Intervention Strategy (IIS) for the Sellafield, Decommissioning, Fuel and Waste Division (SDFW) Division of the Office for Nuclear Regulation (ONR).

The purpose of this intervention was to inspect against compliance with the requirements of the Regulatory Reform (Fire Safety) Order 2005 (RRFSO).

This intervention focused on matters relating to life fire safety.

Interventions Carried Out by ONR

The intervention focused on both the management of fire safety and the practical fire safety provision within the selected facilities identified above.

  • I examined a series of documents prior to my arrival on site.
  • I used the relevant legislation relating to this inspection to focus on life fire safety, not nuclear fire safety issues. 
  • I undertook a walk-down of a random selection of the areas of the buildings and paid particular attention to the practical application of the fire safety strategy. During this walk-down I pointed out examples of obstacles and fire safety issues that are likely to compromise the application of the fire safety strategy.
  • During my inspection, I challenged those accompanying me, and others about procedures and approaches to the practical application of maintaining adequate fire safety provision.
  • I held discussions with relevant persons to assess the approach being taken to the management of fire safety and the testing and maintenance of the fire safety systems across this facility. I paid a particular focus on the Fire Alarm and Detection Systems and Fire Separation.
  • I questioned personnel to test effectiveness and knowledge of arrangements.

Explanation of Judgement if Safety System Not Judged to be Adequate

Not applicable

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

BEPPS-DIF and BEP is a facility currently undergoing construction work. This project is being delivered as part of the Pile Fuel Cladding Silo programme and is aligned with the Nuclear Decommissioning Authority (NDA) strategic imperative of hazard and risk reduction.

Although the outcome will be a single facility, the construction project is being delivered as two separate construction projects, primarily due to BEPPS-DIF being concluded approximately three years before BEP. During the build process each project has supported the other regarding the overall fire strategy.

The primary focus of this inspection was to discuss and challenge those responsible for the management and application of the fire safety strategy and confirm their understanding of their responsibilities under the Regulatory Reform (Fire Safety) Order 2005. In addition, the project was provided with the opportunity to explain the changes to the fire strategy as the two projects approach the point where BEPPS-DIF goes into fully active commissioning and operation.

Conclusion of Intervention

Overall, I concluded that an inspection rating of GREEN was appropriate. I have issued regulatory advice appertaining to a few aspects of fire safety management. I was satisfied that those persons charged with the responsibility for managing the operation of these facilities have an adequate understanding of the requirements relating to fire safety and are keen to address the shortfalls identified at the time of the intervention.