Nuclear specialists from across the country recently gathered in West Cumbria to share the latest learning and best practice in risk management.
The forum, jointly organised by the Nuclear Decommissioning Authority (NDA), Sellafield Ltd and sponsored by LSC Group (a specialist provider of risk management services), brought together representatives from 19 historic nuclear sites owned by the NDA to discuss issues vital to the complex world of risk management, including learning the difference between risk and hazard, how businesses can build an understanding of unknown risks and potential cost consequences.
The event, held at the home of the UK’s most challenging nuclear complex, was preceded by a tour around a number of high-hazard decommissioning projects at the Sellafield site, to provide delegates with an understanding of the company’s role in supporting activities at other nuclear sites, and how associated risks are being managed.
Paul Robson, head of risk management at Sellafield Ltd (a Nuclear Management Partners owned company), described how the site had made significant progress in developing greater levels of risk awareness over recent years, encompassing senior management and the workforce as a whole.
Paul said: “The forum is an opportunity to discuss our improvements, network with risk professionals and build supportive frameworks across the NDA estates, so that we can benefit from each others expertise and increase the value being delivered by the profession for the NDA.
“It is an opportunity to reflect on where ‘best practice’ is being used across the estates, and use it to improve delivery for each of the businesses and the NDA.”
Guest speakers included NDA assurance director Kenna Kintrea, who emphasised the importance of communicating risk as well as ensuring understanding, at every level of an organisation.
Nick White, risk manager at Research Sites Restoration Ltd (an NDA site licensed company responsible for the closure programme at nuclear sites, Harwell and Winfrith) said: “The Sellafield site tour was fantastic and definitely put risk management into perspective. It was a real eye opener for anyone working in risk management.
“The presentations were also excellent and you could see how much effort Sellafield Ltd, NDA and LSC had put into organising the event.
“The most important part now is what we and the estate do with the information to continuously improve risk management.”
Lynn Stalker, Sellafield Ltd business risk manager said: “After all the hard work in preparing both the tour and the forum, we are delighted that it was a success.
“We received a lot of positive feedback from the attendees afterwards which is great for moving forward with the forum in the future.”