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Regulatory support for Wylfa’s continued operation

The Office for Nuclear Regulation has today confirmed that Magnox Limited, the licensee of Wylfa nuclear power station in North Wales, has demonstrated that the station can continue to operate safely until 2024.

This decision follows the regulator’s comprehensive assessment of the site’s periodic safety review – a ten yearly review of safety required of all nuclear sites.

The safety review for Wylfa considered the period from 2014 to 2024, including a period of power generation for Reactor 1 to no later than December 2015.  This will be followed by the defueling of the reactors, and the transfer of fuel for reprocessing after a cool down period. Each transition from one phase to another will require the licensee to produce an adequate safety case to support the continued safe operation of the station for regulatory approval.

Deputy Chief Nuclear Inspector Mark Foy commented:

“Although the periodic review will not be considered complete until the licensee has delivered an agreed programme of work to address certain areas identified for improvement, our assessment has identified no issues of nuclear safety significance that could impact power generation at Wylfa to the planned end date of December 2015, and the subsequent defueling and early decommissioning operations until 2024.”

ONR’s assessment identified a number of areas for improvement which it required the licensee to address in future safety case submissions, and the regulator will monitor their progress in completing this work.

ONR’s assessment report will be published to its website, in due course.

News image Copyright Magnox Ltd.