IAEA Concludes Operational Safety Review of Sweden’s Forsmark Nuclear Power Plant.
Forsmark, 28 February 2008 – An IAEA led international team of nuclear installation safety experts, today commended the management and staff of Sweden’s Forsmark Nuclear Power Plant (NPP) for their commitment to improving the operational safety and reliability of their plant, and also recommended safety improvements.
Miroslav Lipar, head of the IAEA’s Nuclear Installation Operational Safety Section and team leader of the OSART mission, said “the plant has introduced or extended several programmes contributing to improved operational safety, since the OSART preparatory meeting and seminar in June 2007. During this process, operators have extensively applied the OSART methodology for self assessment and used the IAEA Safety Standards as benchmarks to identify useful improvements.”
The International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) team of experts conducted an Operational Safety Assessment Review (OSART) of the Forsmark NPP. Under the leadership of the IAEA’s Division of Nuclear Installation Safety in Vienna, experts from Canada, the Czech Republic, Germany, Japan, Finland, France, Russia, Slovakia, Switzerland, the UK and the US performed a three-week long, in-depth operational safety review.
The Government of Sweden requested the OSART mission following the event on 25 July 2006.
An OSART mission reviews programmes and activities essential to operational safety. It is not a regulatory inspection, a design review, or a substitute for an exhaustive assessment of the plant’s overall safety status.
The team conducted an in-depth review of safety aspects essential to the safe operation of the plant, under the supervision of site management. The conclusions of the review are based on the IAEA’s Safety Standards. The IAEA will issue a final report to the Government of Sweden in three months.
The OSART team made a number of recommendations to improve the operational safety of the Forsmark plant, including:
- A review of responsibilities for the operating staff
- Implementation of an independent high-level review to maintain safety accountability beyond the operator
- Strengthening and improvement of control and review process of operational documentation, emergency preparedness procedures, and operator’s aids
- Improvement of feedback on operating experience
- Establishment and implementation of appropriate control of fire load especially in areas containing safety systems
- Implementation of further appropriate chemistry specifications
Regarding the event on 25 July 2006:
- Technical issues of the event were investigated in depth, however underlying organisational issues took longer to recognise and were requested by the regulatory authority afterwards
- The event was communicated to international organizations, including the IAEA, in an open and timely manner
- The corrective actions from the plant investigation and those required by the regulatory authority were satisfactorily addressed
The team also identified best practices of the plant, such as:
- A well-structured management manual which supports communication of management expectations and commitments
- Computerized monitoring of safety functions and operating status checks
- Effective management of fire cells in order to prevent the spread of any fire and associated fumes
- Use of the training simulator to describe complex events to the media and other key groups, and to demonstrate the orderly work methods in the control room
This was the 145th mission of the OSART programme, which began in 1982.