United States Nuclear Regulatory Commission - Protecting People and the Environment

Clarification of 10 CFR 50.72 with respect to Maine Yankee

HPPOS-101 PDR-9111210227

See the memorandum from E. L. Jordan to T. E. Murley dated January 13, 1984.

This memo states that 10 CFR 50.72 (b) (2) (vi) does not require notification for routine releases. However, when a licensee must report to another agency, NRC requires notification only when that matter involves a news release on an event related to health and safety of the public.

Clarification of the intent of 10 CFR 50.72 (b) (2) (vi) as it relates to notifications required for all radioactive releases. The "inadvertent" release of radioactive material was stated in the rule as an example which would require a 4-hour notification, irrespective of magnitude,

if a news release or notification to other government agencies is made. The 4-hour notification rule in Section 50.72 is not for "routine" releases, although they may be required to be reported to the State. However, a "routine" release that subsequently receives media attention should be reported to the NRC. The referenced paragraph is as follows:

(vi) Any event or situation, related to the health and safety of the public or onsite personnel, or protection of the environment, for which a news release is planned or notification to other government agencies has been or will be made. Such an event may include an onsite fatality or inadvertent release of radioactively contaminated materials.

The key statement is "... event or situation, related to the health and safety ...." Where a state or other government entity has a requirement or agreement with an NRC licensee for routine reporting of other matters, the NRC only requires a report when that matter gets escalated to a "news release" of a "situation."

Regulatory references: 10 CFR 50.72

Subject codes: 2.3, 9.0

Applicability: Reactors

Page Last Reviewed/Updated Tuesday, June 09, 2015