max temp: 12°C

min temp: 2°C

ESTD 1874 Search

Sizewell: Larger emergency plan zone agreed for radiation leak at Sizewell

10:00 27 April 2014

Sizewell Nuclear Power plant is part of the scenery  in Sizewell Gap.

Sizewell Nuclear Power plant is part of the scenery in Sizewell Gap.


Nuclear safety officials have increased the emergency planning area for the Sizewell power station complex, but say the risk of a radiation leak from the coastal site has decreased.


After lengthy consultation, the Office for Nuclear Regulation (ONR) has decided to dispense with its circular 2.4 kilometre zone and to replace it with one based largely on postcodes.

This will mean that parts of the emergency plan zone will stretch up to around 3km from the power stations and both Leiston and the majority of nearby Aldringham will in future be included in it.

Plans will now have to be drawn up to evacuate both communities should an incident occur.

The ONR said the increase in the overall planning area does not reflect an increased risk to the public from the Sizewell site and “the overall hazard has significantly reduced”.

This is due to stringent safety measures at Sizewell B and also the defueling and decommissioning of Sizewell A, which is largely complete.

Sizewell B station director Jim Crawford said he was pleased that the ONR had responded to information supplied by EDF and Magnox which reflected the changes at Sizewell A and its decreasing risk and recognised there was no increased risk associated with Sizewell B.

He said: “We don’t see any change to our local emergency arrangements that we have in place to support the county council.”

EDF opened a new multi-million pound Emergency Response Centre last year at Sizewell to further enhance safety following the lessons learned from Fukushima, though it is hoped the centre will never be deployed, and was a further commitment to how seriously the company took its safety responsibilities.

ONR deputy chief inspector George Sallit said: “Our technical assessment of the hazards on the Sizewell nuclear sites confirms that the overall risk from the dual site has reduced and I believe that the revised REPPIR emergency planning area is in the best interests of public safety, demonstrating our commitment to continuous improvement.

“In applying our revised principles, ONR inspectors have not only assessed the operators’ technical reports but have also worked with Suffolk County Council and other agencies to ensure that practical considerations, relevant to the Sizewell area, have been taken into account when defining the area requiring an off-site emergency plan.

“This includes avoiding having an emergency planning boundary that unnecessarily cuts through small local communities.”

Suffolk County Council will now revise its off-site emergency plan in consultation with the other partners to ensure that robust arrangements are in place as appropriate.

Suffolk Coastal MP Therese Coffey said: “I welcome the fact the zone has been extended to include Leiston and Aldringham.

“Sizewell B carries a lesser risk than Sizewell A but the Emergency Zone will remain at the wider level and be extended in key areas. Extra protections have also already been brought in post Fukushima”.


1 comment

  • Three whole kilometres! Someone from ONR ought to go on a fact-finding visit to Byelarus and look at the zone of devastation around Chernobyl. If Sizewell goes "pop" and the wind's in the wrong direction, most of Suffolk will be rendered uninhabitable for centuries.

    Report this comment


    Sunday, April 27, 2014

The views expressed in the above comments do not necessarily reflect the views of this site

Stock picture of a burglary.

Offenders forced open the front window in the living room of a property in a Suffolk village during a burglary.

Sergeant Ash Jackobs (31) from Felixstowe during 

Chefs from Colchester-based 16 Air Assault Brigade have been wild cooking to prepare for operations in tough environments.

Suffolk County Council's cabinet arrived at Elstree today - the home of the Star Wars franchise.

The day after county councillors discussed cutting millions from the authority’s budget over the next two years, its cabinet members are on a £4,000 training course at the world famous Elstree studios.

Nick Alexander, who died in the Bataclan massacre, in Paris, France. Photo: Foreign & Commonwealth Office/PA Wire.

The parents of Essex man Nick Alexander, killed in the Paris terror attacks two weeks’ ago, have released a statement ahead of a memorial service taking place in the French capital today.

High winds are set to hit Suffolk and Essex. PA Photo: Chris Ison.

A yellow weather warning for high winds has been issued by the Met Office for Essex and Suffolk across the weekend.

Bogus caller victim. Library image.

A Hadleigh resident has fallen prey to a phone scam run by crooks posing as bogus police officers.

Ben Gummer and Mark Pendlington at Ipswich rail station.

Campaigners seeking to improve rail services between East Anglia and London have insisted that the new report into infrastructure is good for the region – because it makes little reference to the route.

Most read

Most commented

Topic pages

Local business directory

Our trusted business finder

Property search

e.g. Oxford or NW3
Powered by Zoopla

Digital Edition

Read the East Anglian Daily Times e-edition today E-edition

Great British Life

Great British Life
MyDate24 MyPhotos24