United States Nuclear Regulatory Commission - Protecting People and the Environment

2013 Individual Actions

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Joseph S. Shepherd (IA 13-038)
Response and Issuance of Erratum to Order (April 8, 2014)
The erratum corrected the description of the work Mr. Shepherd's employer was engaged in, but did not change the conditions in the Order.

On December 23, 2013, the NRC issued Mr. Joseph S. Shepherd, owner of Foss Therapy Services, an Order conditioning involvement in NRC-licensed activities and Notice of Violation (Notice) associated with a willful failure to adhere to some of the conditions set forth in NRC Order IA-08-014. Specifically, on April 13, 2012, Mr. Shepherd, with careless disregard, failed to notify his customer of NRC Order IA-08-014 and did not make the Order available to them. This current Order, NRC Order IA-13-038, conditions Mr. Shepherd's involvement in NRC-licensed activities for a period of 3 years, and also requires certain documentation for an additional year. Under this Order, before beginning work in NRC jurisdiction, Mr. Shepherd must notify customers of NRC Order IA-08-014 and make it available for their review, must provide future employers with a copy of the Order and must also notify the NRC no less than 5 business days before conducting licensed activities within NRC jurisdiction. The provisions above will remain in effect for 3 years from the effective date of the Order. Mr. Shepherd must also determine whether the customer is under NRC jurisdiction, document his determination and state the basis for his determination. The provision will remain in effect for 3 years from the effective date of the Order. The documentation of this requirement must be maintained for a period of 4 years from the effective date of the Order. The NRC also issued a Severity Level III Notice for Mr. Shepherd's failure to follow certain conditions set forth in NRC Order IA-08-014.

Michael J. Buhrman (IA 13-025)

On October 28, 2013, the NRC issued an immediately effective Order prohibiting involvement in NRC-licensed activities to Mr. Michael J. Buhrman, a former Dresden Nuclear Power Station (Dresden) senior reactor operator (SRO) until such time that he can provide reasonable assurance to the NRC that licensed activities can be conducted in compliance with the Commission’s requirements.  Specifically, the NRC determined that Mr. Buhrman held conversations with a now former Dresden Station SRO and a former equipment operator, in which Mr. Buhrman either recruited them, or attempted to recruit them to assist him in an armored car robbery.  However, prior to executing the armored car robbery, Mr. Buhrman was apprehended by police for hijacking a car at gunpoint, released on bail and fled the country.  Mr. Buhrman was later tried in absentia, found guilty of aggravated vehicular hijacking and sentenced to a 40-year prison term.  The NRC has concluded that Mr. Buhrman’s criminal activities related to both the carjacking and the planning of an armored car robbery have demonstrated a lack of trustworthiness.  This enforcement action is necessary to provide the NRC with reasonable assurance that the protection of public health and safety will not be compromised by Mr. Buhrman’s involvement in NRC-licensed activities. 

Landon E. Brittain (IA 13-024)

On October 28, 2013, the NRC issued an immediately effective Order prohibiting involvement in NRC-licensed activities to Mr. Landon E. Brittain, a former Dresden Nuclear Power Station (Dresden) senior reactor operator (SRO) until such time that he can provide reasonable assurance to the NRC that licensed activities can be conducted in compliance with the Commission’s requirements. Specifically, the NRC determined that Mr. Brittain was approached and recruited by a now former Dresden SRO to assist in an armored car robbery. Mr. Brittain’s failure to report this aberrant behavior to Dresden management is a violation of 10 CFR 73.56, “Personnel access authorization requirements for nuclear power plants.” The NRC is also aware that local authorities have charged Mr. Brittain with a number of criminal offenses, including aggravated vehicular hijacking, vehicular hijacking, and obstruction of justice. The NRC has concluded that Mr. Brittain’s failure to report the questionable behavior and his apparent participation in criminal activities have demonstrated a lack of trustworthiness. This enforcement action is necessary to provide the NRC with reasonable assurance that the protection of public health and safety will not be compromised by Mr. Brittain’s involvement in NRC-licensed activities.

Joel A. Keown (IA 13-028)

On October 7, 2013, the NRC issued Mr. Joel A. Keown, an information technology manager, formerly employed by Southern California Edison Company at its San Onofre Nuclear Generating Station (SONGS), a Severity Level III violation of 10 CFR 73.56(g), "Personnel access authorization requirements for nuclear power plants." Specifically, Mr. Keown failed to report a driving under the influence arrest to SONGS management.

Page Last Reviewed/Updated Friday, August 22, 2014