A day in the life of an NII Inspector


A day in the life of a nuclear inspector…

Alan Wylie – Assessment Inspector

“I have had the opportunity to work on numerous projects and assessment tasks since starting with ND just over two years ago. There is a great deal of variety in my role which provides me with different challenges and it is not simply about being technically proficient in my specialism; it involves the need to be an effective regulator and to understand the role of an inspector within ND. My role involves the need to plan and control my inspection and assessment tasks individually and also as part of a wider team.

My inspection would normally start with a sampling assessment of a specific licensee submission with a view to ‘drilling down’ through the submission at particular points of regulator interest. This assessment is then followed up by a detailed site inspection to confirm the validity of the safety case statements made.

The outcome of the inspection is fed back to the licensees at the end of the visit and detailed within visit and assessment reports once back in the office. There are many angles and aspects to the areas inspected, which are linked to the licence conditions associated with the nuclear site licence, eg safety documentation, operating rules and emergency arrangements”.

Craig Lavender – Nuclear project inspection

“At present I undertake a role of project inspecting specialising in quality assurance within the Division of ND responsible for the regulation of power stations in the UK. This is a varied and interesting job as the work covers all power stations across the country, in addition to supporting other QA project inspectors based in other Divisions of ND carrying out inspections across the whole range of UK nuclear licensees.

The responsibilities of this job include verifying that the licensees operate in accordance with arrangements that adequately meet the requirements, or conditions, of their site licence, particularly in the area of quality assurance but also across the full range of the licence conditions.

My time is split between office-based work and site inspection activities. When in the office, work will include the receipt and consideration of responses by licensees to findings raised by me on them during inspections, and either formally accepting them or requiring further activities. It may also involve the production of legal documents, for example to ensure that documents required by the site licence are maintained in accordance with it. I will produce reports of inspections, including documentation, recording and tracking of any findings raised during inspections, and the subsequent correspondence with the sites.


I also produce a programme of inspections, agreed with other inspectors, which I carry out on site.

Any regulatory action required as a result of these inspections is discussed and agreed with the relevant team before being processed through the HSE enforcement process.

I represent HSE on a number of national and international bodies in the area of research and development for the next generation of nuclear reactors and in the production of national and international safety standards”.

Dr Mark Tyrer – Nuclear site inspection

“I am the nominated nuclear inspector for Dungeness B power station, an advanced gas–cooled reactor based in Kent. I have to share my time between being on site and being in the office; on average I spend one week in three on site.

If I am in the office I could find myself doing numerous different things. I have to permission activities relating to nuclear safety at the station so I may find myself producing legal documents to allow a nuclear reactor to start up, or for a plant modification to be carried out. I have to produce reports for various purposes including progress reports and reports for public bodies. I will also produce reports of my visits to site and any correspondence with the station. I also am asked, on a regular basis, to contribute to the production of both internal and international standards on nuclear safety, and to give presentations on the work of NII to various bodies, the latest being a group of French nuclear regulators.

I produce a programme of inspections which I carry out on site. These inspections cover compliance with the nuclear site licence, conventional safety and other relevant legislation. I will also have to carry out investigations into incidents which have occurred on the site. A regulatory process exists which takes the findings from these investigations and helps me decide what regulatory action to take. Another of my duties while on site is to attend public meetings where I explain my work” .


Kulvinder McDonald – Operational strategy

“I have had a varied, interesting and challenging career in ND, with opportunities to work in assessment, site inspection and operational strategy roles, including a period as technical assistant to ND’s Chief Inspector.

ND has further supported my personal development through two secondments to other parts of HSE, where I have been able to contribute to regulatory strategies for other major hazards industries, including the offshore, chemicals and explosive sectors.

I currently work within ND’s Nuclear Research and Strategy Division, heading up their ‘operating experience feedback’ team of two inspectors and two administrators. My role involves supporting ND’s operational divisions in recognising and acting upon experience from incidents within the UK and internationally to prevent their recurrence and, in doing so, help prevent serious nuclear accidents.

I am responsible for developing, implementing and embedding processes across ND for effective use of lessons from incidents on licensed sites.

I have to ensure that incidents reported by licensees under the nuclear site licence are collated, assessed for safety significance and issues for follow-up identified and sentenced. I work closely with operational inspectors to evaluate trends from licensees’ incidents, which they can use when planning their inspection and assessment activity. I also support site inspectors in planning and carrying out compliance inspections of licensees’ systems for ‘learning from experience’.

I spend a significant proportion of my time supporting international operating experience feedback incident reporting systems. This involves working with UK licensees to identify which of their incidents have potential for international learning, inputting these incidents into international systems and extracting and promulgating internaional lessons within the UK. I am currently leading a team of international regulators in reviewing the effectiveness of international operating experience feedback systems”.

To discuss this or similar posts, please contact ERS on 01454 203 460, or submit a CV to cv@energyrs.co.uk, to register your interest or apply for this position, further details available at http://www.ERSJobs.co.uk







Leave a Reply

Please log in using one of these methods to post your comment:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: