…To Improve Operational Safety Performance
By Fuming Jiang and Kaz Nagashima
The International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) has recently updated its public website to include 606 good practices from 73 Operational Safety Review Team (OSART) Missions conducted between 2006 and 2019. These missions review the safety of nuclear power reactors – on the request of the operators’ national authorities. They are led by the IAEA and include experts from around the world. The aim of providing easy public access to these good practices is to promote their sharing and benchmarking to each other, help individual nuclear operating organizations enhance their operational safety and bring further improvement in the safety performance of the global nuclear fleet.
The exchange of good practices is a key mandate of the IAEA in operational safety. These good practices cover a wide range of areas essential for safe operation both in nuclear power plants and in their corporate organizations, including human and organizational performance under normal operation and accident conditions, as well as independent corporate oversight and communication.
The good practices available on the site before the recent upgrade had already served the operator community well. “We had assessed and used these applicable good practices extensively during the preparation of our OSART Mission in 2017 and were able to improve our safety performance in several areas quickly by adopting similar practices,” already before he mission, said Station Director of the Leningrad Nuclear Power Plant in Russia, Vladimir Pereguda. “This is also the additional value provided by the OSART Mission, and I encourage our peers in the industry to follow suit.”
In their feedback following OSART reviews, many operating organizations have indicated that they are systematically screening and analysing these good practices and applying those that are applicable to them.
“The willingness of the industry to share their good practices reflects collective commitment to continuous safety improvement and to transparency,” said Director of Nuclear Installation Safety at the IAEA, Greg Rzentkowski. “Through its safety review services like OSART, the IAEA plays a central role in identifying and promoting specific actions that could be taken to improve operational safety.”
OSART missions provide operators with insights on how to improve safety further and have led to enhanced safety performance worldwide. There are now more than 1340 good practices from all OSART missions in the IAEA database. Every country that has hosted OSART missions has agreed to share their good practices with a wider audience that includes the global nuclear industry.