ASN Report 2022

ASN and IRSN also carry out a more wide-ranging examination of the OEF from the events. The significant event reports and the periodic reviews sent by the licensees, as well as the assessment by ASN and IRSN, constitute the basis of OEF. The examination of OEF may lead to ASN requests for improvements to the condition of the facilities and the organisation adopted by the licensee, but also for changes to the regulations. OEF comprises the events which occur in France and abroad in nuclear facilities or in those presenting non-radiological hazards, if it is pertinent to take them into account in order to reinforce nuclear safety or radiation protection. 3.3.3 Technical inquiries held in the event of an incident or accident concerning a nuclear activity ASN has the authority to carry out an immediate technical inquiry in the event of an incident or accident in a nuclear activity. This inquiry consists in collecting and analysing all useful information, without prejudice to any judicial inquiry, in order to determine the circumstances and the identified or possible causes of the event, and draw up the appropriate recommendations if necessary. Articles L. 592-35 et seq. of the Environment Code give ASN powers to set up a board of inquiry, determine its composition (ASN staff and people from outside ASN), define the subject and scope of the investigations and gain access to all necessary elements in the event of a judicial inquiry. Decree 2007-1572 of 6 November 2007 on technical inquiries into accidents or incidents concerning a nuclear activity specifies the procedure to be followed. It is based on practices defined by the other boards of inquiry and takes account of aspects specific to ASN, notably its independence, its own roles, its ability to impose binding requirements or sanctions. 3.3.4 Statistical summary of events In 2022, 1,989 significant events were reported to ASN: ∙ 1,161 significant events concerning nuclear safety, radiation protection, the environment and the on-site transport of hazardous materials within BNIs, 1,082 of which are rated on the INES scale (97 level 1 events). Of these events, 21 significant events were rated as “generic events”, in other words concerning several reactors, including 2 at level 1 on the INES scale; ∙ 88 significant events concerning the TSR on the public highway (12 events rated level 1 on the INES scale); ∙ 740 significant events concerning radiation protection in smallscale nuclear activities, including 202 rated on the INES scale (39 were level 1 events and 1 level 2). Graphs 1 to 6 (see pages 158 and 159) describe in detail the significant events reported to ASN in 2022, differentiating between them according to the various notification criteria for each field of activity. 2. This scale is designed for communication with the public in comprehensible, explicit terms, concerning radiation protection events leading to unexpected or unforeseeable effects affecting patients undergoing a radiotherapy medical procedure. In 2022, one event was rated level 2 on the INES scale. It concerns the accidental exposure of a worker who was carrying out maintenance work close to an X-ray generator used to measure the thickness of steel sheets. As indicated earlier, these data must be used with caution: they do not in themselves constitute a safety indicator. ASN encourages the licensees to report incidents, which contributes to transparency and the sharing of experience. The breakdown of significant events rated on the INES scale is given in Table 6. As the INES scale does not apply to significant events concerning patients, the rating of significant events affecting one or more patients in radiotherapy on the ASN‑SFRO scale(2) is specified in chapter 7. Likewise, significant events concerning the environment but involving non-radiological substances are not covered by the INES scale. They are classified as “out of INES scale” events. 3.4 Raising the awareness of professionals and cooperating with the other administrations Regulation is supplemented by awareness-raising programmes designed to ensure familiarity with the regulations and their application in practical terms appropriate to the various professions. ASN aims to encourage and support initiatives by the professional organisations that implement this approach by issuing best practices and professional information guides. ASN publishes “Avoiding accidents” sheets with the aim of sharing its OEF analyses. Awareness-raising also involves joint actions with other administrations and organisations which oversee the same facilities, but with different prerogatives. One could here mention the labour inspectorate, the medical devices inspectorate work by the ANSM, the medical activities inspectorate work entrusted to the technical services of the Ministry of Health, or the oversight of small-scale nuclear activities at the Ministry of Defence entrusted to the Armed Forces General Inspectorate. 3.5 Information about ASN’s regulatory activity ASN attaches importance to coordinating Government departments and informs the other administration departments concerned of its inspection programme, the follow-up to its inspections, the penalties imposed on the licensees and any significant events. To ensure that its inspection work is transparent, ASN informs the public by placing the following on its website ∙ its resolutions and decisions; ∙ inspection follow-up letters for all the activities it inspects; ∙ the approvals and accreditations it issues or rejects; ∙ incident notices; ∙ reactor outage summaries; ∙ thematic publications. 156 ASN Report on the state of nuclear safety and radiation protection in France in 2022 • 03 • Regulation of nuclear activities and exposure to ionising radiation 03