$32,500 Penalty Confirmed by NRC Staff

The penalty against B&W Nuclear Operations Group of Lynchburg, Va., is based on its alleged failure to have adequate instructions telling workers how to neutralize acid spills.

The staff of the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission has ordered B&W Nuclear Operations Group of Lynchburg, Va., to pay a $32,500 civil penalty for its alleged failure to provide adequate instructions showing workers how to neutralize acid spills, NRC announced June 17.

The event triggering the violation happened in April 2008. According to NRC, a process operator tried to neutralize a hydrofluoric acid spill by adding sodium hydroxide, a strong base, "which reacted violently to the acid on the floor. This resulted in an injury to the operator’s eye that required medical attention," according to the agency's announcement, which said B&W had disputed the severity level of the violation and the proposed penalty.

"Although we recognize the timely and effective response by B&W staff, the injury was significant and under different circumstances, the injury could have been more serious," said Luis Reyes, NRC's Region II administrator. B&W has 20 days to pay the penalty or request a hearing.

B&W Nuclear Operations Group operates a uranium fuel fabrication plant in Lynchburg that received a good licensee performance review from NRC last September. The review covered safety operations, radiological controls, facility support, and security from June 22, 2008, through June 30, 2009, with no areas found to need improvement, although there was an emergency declaration of an Alert, the lowest NRC emergency category for nuclear fuel facilities, in July 2008. NRC says the chemical, radiological, and criticality hazards for workers at such plants are similar to hazards at enrichment plants. Fabrication plants generally pose a low risk to the public, the agency says.

B&W Nuclear Operations Group employs about 3,800 people and is part of the Babcock & Wilcox Company also based in Lynchburg.

Product Showcase

  • Full Line of Defense Against Combustible Dust Nilfisk

    Nilfisk provides a comprehensive range of industrial vacuums meticulously crafted to adhere to NFPA 652 housekeeping standards, essential for gathering combustible dust in Class I, Group D, and Class II, Groups E, F & G environments or non-classified settings. Our pneumatic vacuums are meticulously engineered to fulfill safety criteria for deployment in hazardous surroundings. Leveraging advanced filtration technology, Nilfisk ensures the secure capture of combustible materials scattered throughout your facility, ranging from fuels, solvents, and metal dust to flour, sugar, and pharmaceutical powders. Read More

  • Safety Knives

    The Safety Knife Company has developed a quality range of safety knives for all industries. Designed so that fingers cannot get to the blades, these knives will safely cut through cardboard, tape, strapping, shrink or plastic wrap or a variety of other packing materials. Because these knives have no exposed blades and only cut cardboard deep, they will not only protect employees against lacerations but they will also save product. The Metal Detectable versions have revolutionary metal detectable polypropylene knife bodies specifically for the food and pharmaceutical industries. This material can be detected and rejected by typical detection machines and is X-ray visible. Read More

  • Preventative Heat Safety

    Dehydration and heat exposure impair physical and cognitive performance. Proper hydration boosts heat stress resilience, but hydration needs are highly individualized and hard to predict across a workforce. Connected Hydration® empowers industrial athletes to stay safe through behavioral interventions, informed by sports science, and equips safety teams with critical insights to anticipate high-risk situations and adapt to evolving environmental factors. Curious about applying the latest in sports science based hydration strategies for industrial athletes? Stop by booth #1112 at AIHA or schedule a free demo today at https://epcr.cc/demo. Read More

Featured

Webinars