$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

  • 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. 3

  • NoiseCHEK Personal Noise Dosimeter

    SKC NoiseCHEK is the easiest-to-use dosimeter available! Designed specifically for OEHS professionals, SKC NoiseCHEK offers the easiest operation and accurate noise measurements. Everything you need is right in your palm. Pair Bluetooth models to your mobile devices and monitor workers remotely with the SmartWave dB app without interrupting workflow. Careful design features like a locking windscreen, sturdy clip, large front-lit display, bright status LEDs, and more make NoiseCHEK the top choice in noise dosimeters. Demo NoiseCHEK at AIHA Connect Booth 1003. 3

  • SECUPRO MARTEGO

    FOR HIGHEST DEMANDS. A cutting tool in which function and design go hand in hand. Meet the SECUPRO MARTEGO, our prize-winning squeeze-grip safety knife with fully automatic retractable blade for safety. • Ergonomically friendly trigger mechanism to engage the blade • Durable body made of aluminum • Safer alternative to fixed blade utility knives for general cutting tasks • 9 mm Cutting depth • Easy, tool free blade change Dimensions: L 6.10" L x 0.71" W x 1.91" H Weight: 3.70 oz Cutting Depth: 9 mm 3

Featured

Webinars