United States Nuclear Regulatory Commission - Protecting People and the Environment

EA-02-177 - Craig Testing Laboratories, Inc.

September 30, 2002

EA-02-177

Michael Cannan
President
Craig Testing Laboratories, Inc.
5439 Harding Highway
Mays Landing, NJ 08330

SUBJECT: NOTICE OF VIOLATION (NRC Inspection Report No. 030-14353/2002-001)

Dear Mr. Cannan:

This refers to the NRC inspection conducted on July 17, 2002, at your facility located in Mays Landing, New Jersey, as well as at a temporary job site at the Hopewell Valley High School, Pennington, New Jersey, to review the circumstances associated with the damage of an unattended nuclear gauge containing a 9 millicurie cesium-137 source and a 44 millicurie americium-241 source. You reported this damage to the NRC by telephone on July 15, 2002, and you followed up that verbal report with a letter dated August 12, 2002, wherein you described corrective actions taken to prevent recurrence. As described in the NRC inspection report sent to you on September 6, 2002, one apparent violation of NRC requirements was identified during the NRC inspection.

In the letter dated September 6, 2002, transmitting the inspection report, the NRC informed you of a predecisional enforcement conference scheduled for September 26, 2002 to discuss this finding. The conference was held to discuss the apparent violation, its causes, and your corrective actions to prevent the violation from recurring. During the conference, the NRC also discussed the fact that violations involving the failure to secure gauges had been identified at your facility during previous inspections since December 1990.

Based on the information developed during the inspection, and the information provided by you during the conference, as well as your letter dated August 12, 2002, the NRC has determined that a violation of NRC requirements occurred. The violation is cited in the enclosed Notice of Violation (Notice) and the circumstances surrounding it are described in detail in the subject inspection report. The violation involved the failure to maintain control of the nuclear gauge, which resulted in damage to the gauge. The violation occurred when the gauge user left the gauge unattended on an elevated manhole cover next to a fence on July 15, 2002, while he moved his truck away from the construction area. During the time period that the gauge was left unattended, the gauge was damaged when it was run over by a forklift. Although the source was in the shielded condition at the time it was left unattended, this violation is of concern to the NRC because (1) the failure to control radioactive material resulted in the damage to the gauge; and (2) such sources can result in substantial unintended radiation dose to an individual if the source is removed from the unshielded position. Therefore, this violation is categorized at Severity Level III in accordance with the "General Statement of Policy and Procedure for NRC Enforcement Actions" (Enforcement Policy), NUREG-1600.

In accordance with the Enforcement Policy, a base civil penalty in the amount of $3,000 is considered for a Severity Level III violation involving the loss of control of radioactive material with this level of radioactivity. Because your facility has not been the subject of escalated enforcement action within the last two years or two inspections, the NRC considered whether credit was warranted for Corrective Action in accordance with the civil penalty assessment process in Section VI.C.2 of the Enforcement Policy. Credit for corrective actions is warranted because your corrective actions were considered prompt and comprehensive. These corrective actions included, but were not limited to: (1) immediately contacting the gauge manufacturer and placing the gauge containing the sources in a safe environment; (2) re-instruction of all gauge users, emphasizing compliance with all NRC requirements; (3) implementing a policy for disciplinary action in the event of failure to follow the NRC regulations; and (4) implementing policies that require the Radiation Safety Officer to visit job sites at least monthly to ensure compliance, and to inspect all gauges at least monthly.

Therefore, to encourage prompt and comprehensive correction of violations, I have been authorized, after consultation with the Director, Office of Enforcement, to issue the enclosed Notice of Violation for the Severity Level III violation with no civil penalty. However, you should be aware that significant violations in the future could result in a civil penalty. Further, since similar violations have been identified during previous inspections of your licensed activities, you should provide appropriate attention to ensure that your corrective actions to prevent recurrence are effective and long lasting. In addition, issuance of this Notice constitutes escalated enforcement action that may subject you to increased inspection effort.

The NRC has concluded that information regarding your corrective actions taken and planned to correct the violations and prevent recurrence have been described as documented in this letter. Therefore, you are not required to respond to this letter unless the description therein does not accurately reflect your corrective actions or your position. In that case, or if you choose to provide additional information, you should follow the instructions specified in the enclosed Notice. We appreciate your cooperation with us in this matter.

In accordance with 10 CFR 2.790 of the NRC's "Rules of Practice," a copy of this letter, its enclosures, and your response (if you choose to provide one) will be made available electronically for public inspection in the NRC Public Document Room or from the Publicly Available Records (PARS) component of NRC's document system (ADAMS). ADAMS is accessible from the NRC Web site at http://www.nrc.gov/reading-rm/adams.html (the Public NRC Library).

Sincerely,

  /RA/ James T. Wiggins

  Hubert J. Miller
Regional Administrator

Docket No. 03014353
License No. 29-18018-01

Enclosure:  1. Notice of Violation

cc w/encl:
State of New Jersey
State of Maryland


ENCLOSURE

NOTICE OF VIOLATION

Craig Testing Laboratories, Inc.
Mays Landing, New Jersey
  Docket No. 03014353
License No. 29-18018-01
EA 02-177

During an NRC inspection conducted on July 17, 2002, one violation of NRC requirements was identified. In accordance with the "General Statement of Policy and Procedure for NRC Enforcement Actions," (Enforcement Policy), NUREG-1600, the violation is set forth below:

10 CFR 20.1801 requires that the licensee secure from unauthorized removal or access licensed materials that are stored in controlled or unrestricted areas. 10 CFR 20.1802 requires that the licensee control and maintain constant surveillance of licensed material that is in a controlled or unrestricted area and that is not in storage. As defined in 10 CFR 20.1003, controlled area means an area, outside of a restricted area but inside the site boundary, access to which can be limited by the licensee for any reason; and unrestricted area means an area, access to which is neither limited nor controlled by the licensee.
Contrary to the above, on July 15, 2002, the licensee did not limit access to a Troxler Model 3430 density gauge (containing a 9-millicurie cesium-137 and a 44 millicurie americium-241 source) located at a temporary job site at the Hopewell Valley High School, Pennington, New Jersey, which is an unrestricted area, nor did the licensee control and maintain constant surveillance of this licensed material. Specifically, the gauge user left the gauge unattended on an elevated manhole cover next to a fence while he moved his truck away from the construction area at the job site. During the time period that the gauge was left unattended, the gauge was damaged when it was run over by a forklift.
This is a Severity Level III violation (Supplement VI)

The NRC has concluded that information regarding the reason for the violations, and the corrective actions taken and planned to correct the violations and prevent recurrence are already adequately addressed on the docket in the NRC letter transmitting this Notice. Therefore, no response to this Notice is required. However, you are required to submit a written statement or explanation pursuant to 10 CFR 2.201 if the description therein does not accurately reflect your corrective actions or your position. In that case, or if you choose to respond, clearly mark your response as a "Reply to a Notice of Violation," and send it to the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission, ATTN:  Document Control Desk, Washington, DC 20555 with a copy to the Regional Administrator, Region I, within 30 days of the date of the letter transmitting this Notice of Violation (Notice).

If you contest this enforcement action, you should also provide a copy of your response, with the basis for your denial, to the Director, Office of Enforcement, United States Nuclear Regulatory Commission, Washington, DC 20555.

If you choose to respond, your response will be placed in the NRC Public Document Room (PDR). Therefore, to the extent possible, the response should not include any personal privacy or proprietary information so that it can be placed in the PDR without redaction. ADAMS is accessible from the NRC Web site at http://www.nrc.gov/reading-rm/adams.html (the Public NRC Library).

In accordance with 10 CFR 19.11, you may be required to post this Notice within two working days.

Dated this 30th day of September 2002

 

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