Third memorandum by British Energy
Nuclear safety remains paramount and our overriding
objective in operating our nuclear stations is to prevent any
radiological release that may threaten the public, our workforce,
or the environment.
Nuclear power is a highly regulated industry.
Our nuclear site licenses are issued by the Health and Safety
Executive's (HSE) Nuclear Installations Inspectorate (NII) and
place specific conditions on the way we manage safety. The NII
monitor compliance with each nuclear site license through an inspector
assigned to each station. We must gain NII consent each time we
start up a reactor following an outage, and the NII can direct
a licensee to shut down a reactor if they do not consider it safe
British Energy also carries out self-regulation,
placing great emphasis on the importance of maintaining and continuing
to develop a "safety first" culture. We have internal
processes aimed at delivering continuous improvements in performance
Our commitment to safety is reflected in our
consultation and advisory processes. We operate Health and Safety
Committees (HESACs) at each of our locations, which promote consultation
between management and unions on issues of safety, health and
welfare matters as well as environmental protection. The HESACs
play a proactive role in promoting safety culture and good practice.
We operate to strict procedures to minimise
the doses received by employees and contractors at all our nuclear
power stations. Doses are reduced by shielding workers from the
sources of radiation and by the use of protective equipment. We
monitor every worker who enters an area where he or she may receive
radiation. Individual radiation doses are measures in Sieverts
(Sv) and collective doses in man-Sv/reactor.
To put our dose rates in an international context,
in 2005, BE's reactors were in the best performing 10% in the
world for achieved doses. Our good performance against international
standards is partly due to our good practices, but also due to
the design of our Advanced Gas-Cooled Reactors (AGRs) which require
less human entry to areas of high radiation than some other reactor
The statutory limit for annual radiation dose
to any individual employee or contractor is 20 mSv, but the Company
operates to a more restrictive dose level of 10 mSv.
British Energy's industrial safety record remains
amongst the best of UK industry due to safety management arrangements
in place to implement our health and safety policy. The Company
encourages a culture of open reporting of all accidents, including
those where no actual injury resulted.
Each year the Royal Society for the Prevention
of Accidents (RoSPA) presents awards for excellence in managing
health and safety at work. By recognising such performance these
awards promote safety and encourage best practice.
This year's awards attained by British Energy's
nuclear stations are as follows:
Commendation in the Electricity SectorHunterston
B (this is one of the premier awards singling them out as one
of the very best performers).
Order of DistinctionHeysham 2 (this is
based on at least 15 successive gold awards).
Presidents awardDungeness B, Hartlepool,
Heysham 1, Torness (this is based on at least 10 successive gold
Gold MedalHinkley Point B, Sizewell B
(this is based on at least five successive gold awards).