United States Nuclear Regulatory Commission - Protecting People and the Environment

Fire Protection Program for Operating Reactors

The NRC's fire protection regulations, inspections, and research activities focus on:

Minimizing the
potential for fires and

Rapidly detecting,
controlling and
extinguishing fires
that do occur
Safe Shutdown
Ensuring operators
can shut down the
reactor safely despite
a fire

The NRC requires a robust fire protection program at every commercial nuclear power plant in the United States to ensure the reactor facilities operate safely. Plants can choose between two approaches for managing their fire safety: deterministic fire protection or risk-informed, performance-based fire protection. These approaches apply the concept of defense-in-depth to meet fire protection objectives. The image below depicts several of the fire protection requirements currently in place.