TEPCO’s Reply to the Preliminary Assessment Results from the Nuclear Regulation Authority in Regards to the Partial Loss of Nuclear Material Protective Equipment Function at the Kashiwazaki-Kariwa Nuclear Power Station
March 18, 2021
Tokyo electric power Company holdings, Inc.
TEPCO has experienced a rash of nuclear material protection-related incidents at the Kashiwazaki-Kariwa Nuclear Power Station since the unauthorized use of an ID card last year. We would like to deeply apologize for the concern we have caused amongst regional residents, and society as a whole, as a result of these incidents.
At the meeting of the Nuclear Regulation Authority (NRA) held on March 16, a report was given about this incident, and the NRA agreed on preliminary assessment results deeming the importance level assessment* to be “Red.”
TEPCO takes this assessment very seriously and has reviewed the details of the decision. After quickly deliberating action to be taken, we have replied to the NRA today and stated that we have no desire to state an opinion in regards to the results.
Firstly, the following actions will be quickly implemented after which management will engage in dialogue with all power station personnel to thoroughly ascertain the causes of this string of incidents, such as the unauthorized use of an ID card and the discovery that some safety measure renovations have yet to be finished, etc., from various vantage points.
<Action to be immediately taken>
1. General Manager of Nuclear Power & Plant Siting Division (Shigenori Makino) and Headquarter personnel will reside at the power station.
2. Niigata Headquarters Representative (Masaya Kitta) will reside at the power station.
3. An assessment will be conducted by a third-party body comprised of external experts that will provide advice, and good practices from other utilities will be incorporated.
<Issues to be focused on when ascertaining the causes of these incidents>
- Conditions related to management resources
- Work environment issues hindering rule compliance
- Factors preventing quick resolution of work issues
- Nuclear security awareness, etc.
*Safety Importance Level Assessment:
Safety importance levels are classified as Red, Yellow, White or Green depending on the degree to which safety at nuclear power facilities has been degraded. Each classification is defined as follows.
Red: Large impact on safety functions or performance.
Yellow: Impact on safety functions or performance, and decrease in safety margins.
White: Impact on safety functions or performance, and decrease in safety margins, but improvements can be made with regulatory involvement.
Green: Impact on safety functions or performance, but such impact is limited or extremely small, and therefore improvements can be made by operators on their own.