The Fauske Onsite Safety Studies group (OSS) is active across a number of industries, performing both DHA and PHA studies. A site assessment can involve a number of cross discipline elements to assess the costs, risks and health of the occupants. The various elements focus on the identification of hazards, the characterization of those hazards and delivering a mitigation strategy. As a wholly owned subsidiary of Westinghouse Electric Company, we support Westinghouse on nuclear fire safety studies and have access to risk analysis experts who can support non-nuclear site assessments.
Westinghouse and Fauske have collaborated on many site assessments. Most recently the team is working on a fire hazards assessment (FHA). The FHA evaluates potential fire hazards and appropriate fire protection systems and features used to mitigate the effects of a fire in any waste management location. The FHA will be performed to demonstrate that the waste management maintains the ability to safely maintain operation or shut down if operations cannot be maintained while minimizing radioactive material releases to the environment in the event of a fire. FHA work for nuclear facilities is based on NUREG-1805.
This type of assessment combines skills from walkdowns, fire PRA such as the use of fire modeling tools, and explosion analysis. Fauske investigates three explosion hazards: (1) Explosion of fuels, solvents, dust, and other transient materials that may be present, (2) Explosion hazards associated with radiolytically generated gases, and (3) Explosion hazards associated with decomposition/heating of organic ion exchange resins.
Explosions and fires may be correlated and, in many instances an explosion can precede (trigger) or follow a fire event. While it is expected that the explosion mechanism will result in a more bounding screening distance values (SDV), the fire mechanism is generally evaluated. For the fire mechanism, our team identifies fixed or transient sources where the initiating event could impact the plant, considering immediate impact, propagation, impacts of smoke/soot on site ventilation systems and impacts on offsite power equipment.
A secondary effect of fire is smoke and aerosolized particulates (soot) which can disrupt operations through impact on plant personnel, require fire brigades to protect facilities, impose limitations on outdoor operations and impact HVAC through particulate clogging of HVAC filters.
Transitory fire events consider the impact of human activity in surrounding areas that may directly or indirectly be the cause of fires.
The overall assessment is documented in a detailed report which identifies any deficiencies, recommends solutions, and provides suggestions for improvement.
For more information on how fire hazards and other evaluations can support a site assessment, please visit: https://www.fauske.com/blog/what-is-a-facility-siting-assessment
Westinghouse and Fauske are established global leaders in working with the nuclear industry to provide deterministic fire support including fire hazard analyses. Examples of past support include AP1000 nuclear power plant and Columbia fuel fabrication facility. These projects involved characterizing the types of fires that could occur in the facility, the suppression and detection systems available, and the firefighting response from personnel. As part of these hazard analyses, Westinghouse provided insights to improve personnel safety at the sites, as well as identify vulnerabilities from a plant operability perspective. Westinghouse is familiar with characterizing fire hazards posed to industrial sites, identifying vulnerabilities, and providing recommendations to improve plant operation.