United States Nuclear Regulatory Commission - Protecting People and the Environment

EA-96-036 - Stocker and Yale, Inc.

March 18, 1996

EA 96-036

Mr. James Bickman, President
Stocker and Yale, Incorporated
8 Preston Court
Swampscott, Massachusetts 01907

SUBJECT:  NOTICE OF VIOLATION
          (NRC Inspection Report No. 030-11198/95-001)

Dear Mr. Bickman:

This refers to the inspection conducted on December 5 and 7, 1995, and January 17 and 26, 1996 at your Beverly and Swampscott, Massachusetts facilities. The purpose of the inspection was to determine whether activities authorized by the license were conducted safely and in accordance with NRC requirements. During the inspection apparent violations of NRC requirements were identified, and were described in the NRC inspection report transmitted with our letter dated February 15, 1996. On March 13, 1996, a Predecisional Enforcement Conference was conducted with you and Robert Denis of your staff to discuss the violations, their causes, and your corrective actions. A summary of the Predecisional Enforcement Conference is enclosed.

Based on the information developed during the inspection and the information that you provided during the conference, the NRC has determined that violations of NRC requirements occurred. These violations are cited in the enclosed Notice of Violation and circumstances surrounding them are described in detail in the subject inspection report.

The violations include the following: (1) your transfer of licensed radioactive material from your Beverly, Massachusetts facility to Salem, New Hampshire without an Agreement State license; (2) failure to maintain control and surveillance of licensed radioactive material left in the Assembly Room of the Beverly facility; (3) failure to limit the amount of licensed radioactive material that may be possessed at one time to the amount authorized on your NRC license; and (4) failure to have a named individual as Radiation Safety Officer.

These violations are particularly disturbing because they are indicative of a failure to provide adequate management oversight and control of radioactive material. The NRC license issued to Stocker & Yale, Inc. entrusts responsibility for radiation safety to management; therefore, the NRC expects effective oversight of its licensed programs. Incumbent upon each NRC licensee is the responsibility of management in general, and the Radiation Safety Officer in particular, to protect the public health and safety by ensuring that all requirements of the NRC license are met and any potential violations of NRC requirements are identified and corrected expeditiously. Given the lack of management attention towards licensed responsibilities, these violations are classified in the aggregate in accordance with the "General Statement of Policy and Procedure for NRC Enforcement Actions" (Enforcement Policy), NUREG-1600, as a Severity Level III problem.

In accordance with the Enforcement Policy, a base civil penalty in the amount of $2,500 is considered for a Severity Level III problem. Because your facility has not been the subject of escalated enforcement actions within the last two inspections, the NRC considered whether credit was warranted for Corrective Action in accordance with the civil penalty assessment process in Section VI.B.2 of the Enforcement Policy. Credit for corrective actions is warranted because your corrective actions were both prompt and comprehensive. These actions, which had been completed prior to the conference were discussed during the conference and include the following: (1) promptly initiating actions to decontaminate your Beverly and Swampscott facilities; (2) obtaining an Agreement State license from the State of New Hamsphire to authorize possession of licensed material in New Hampshire; and (3) obtaining a consultant to perform the duties of Radiation Safety Officer until a member of your staff completes formal training.

Therefore, to encourage prompt and comprehensive correction of violations, and in recognition of the absence of previous escalated enforcement action, I have been authorized, not to propose a civil penalty in this case. However, significant violations in the future could result in a civil penalty.

You are required to respond to this letter and should follow the instructions specified in the enclosed Notice when preparing your response. In your response, you should document the specific actions taken and any additional actions you plan to prevent recurrence. After reviewing your response to this Notice, including your proposed corrective actions and the results of future inspections, the NRC will determine whether further NRC enforcement action is necessary to ensure compliance with NRC regulatory requirements.

In accordance with 10 CFR 2.790 of the NRC's "Rules of Practice," a copy of this letter, its enclosure(s), and your response will be placed in the NRC Public Document Room (PDR). To the extent possible, your response should not include any personal privacy, proprietary, or safeguards information so that it can be placed in the PDR without redaction.

The responses directed by this letter and the enclosed Notice are not subject to the clearance procedures of the Office of Management and Budget as required by the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1980, Pub. L. No. 96.511.

                                  Sincerely,



                                  Thomas T. Martin
                                  Regional Administrator

Docket No. 030-11198
License No. 20-16532-01

Enclosures:

  1. Notice of Violation
  2. Predecisional Enforcement Conference Summary

cc w/encls:
Commonwealth of Massachusetts
State of New Hampshire


NOTICE OF VIOLATION
Stocker and Yale, Incorporated                                  Docket No. 030-11198
Swampscott, Massachusetts                                       License No. 20-16532-01
                                                                EA 96-036

During an NRC inspection conducted on December 5 and 7, 1995, and January 17 and 26, 1996, violations of NRC requirements were identified. In accordance with the "General Statement of Policy and Procedure for NRC Enforcement Actions," NUREG-1600, the violations are listed below:

A. 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, unrestricted area means an area, access to which is neither limited nor controlled by the licensee.

Contrary to the above, from October 19, 1995 through January 14, 1996, the licensee did not secure from unauthorized removal or limit access to millicurie amounts of sealed ampules of tritium located in the Assembly Room of their former facility at 133 Brimbal Avenue, Beverly, Massachusetts, an unrestricted area, nor did the licensee control and maintain constant surveillance of this licensed material.

B. 10 CFR 30.41(a) and (b)(5) require, in part, that no licensee transfer byproduct material except to a person authorized to receive such byproduct material under the terms of a specific or general license issued by the Commission or Agreement State.

Contrary to the above, on or before October 19, 1995, the licensee transferred licensed material containing approximately 5 curies of tritium to their Salem, New Hampshire facility, a person who was not authorized to receive such byproduct material under the terms of a specific or general license issued by the Commission or Agreement State.

C. License Condition 8.A. of License No. 20-16532-01 requires that the maximum amount that the licensee may possess at any one time under this license is 10 curies.

Contrary to the above, as of December 5, 1995, the licensee possessed greater than 10 curies of licensed material. Specifically, the licensee's inventory records indicated that it possessed licensed material in excess of 150 curies.

D. License Condition 11.B. of License No. 20-16532-01 requires that the Radiation Safety Officer be a named individual (Karen DelMastro).

Contrary to the above, as of April 1994, the individual named as Radiation Safety Officer was not working for or employed by the licensee. Specifically, the named individual left on maternity leave and did not return.

This is a Severity Level III problem (Supplement VI).

Pursuant to the provisions of 10 CFR 2.201, Stocker & Yale, Incorporated (Licensee) is hereby required to submit a written statement or explanation to the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission, ATTN: Document Control Desk, Washington, D.C. 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). This reply should be clearly marked as a "Reply to a Notice of Violation" and should include for each violation: (1) the reason for the violation, or if contested, the basis for disputing the violation, (2) the corrective steps that have been taken and the results achieved, (3) the corrective steps that will be taken to avoid further violations, and (4) the date when full compliance will be achieved. Your response may reference or include previous docketed correspondence, if the correspondence adequately addresses the required response. If an adequate reply is not received within the time specified in the Notice, an order or a Demand for Information may be issued as to why the license should not be modified, suspended, or revoked, or why such other action as may be proper should not be taken. Where good cause is shown, consideration will be given to extending the response time.

Under the authority of Section 182 of the Act, 42 U.S.C. 2232, this response shall be submitted under oath or affirmation.

Because your response will be placed in the NRC Public Document Room (PDR), to the extent possible, it should not include any personal privacy, proprietary, or safeguards information so that it can be placed in the PDR without redaction. However, if you find it necessary to include such information, you should clearly indicate the specific information that you desire not to be placed in the PDR, and provide the legal basis to support your request for withholding the information from the public.

Dated at King of Prussia, Pennsylvania
this 18th day of March 1996

 

 

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