United States Nuclear Regulatory Commission - Protecting People and the Environment

Information Notice No. 84-05: Exercise Frequency

                                                             SSINS No: 6835 
                                                             IN 84-05      

                               UNITED STATES 
                       NUCLEAR REGULATORY COMMISSION 
                    OFFICE OF INSPECTION AND ENFORCEMENT 
                          WASHINGTON, D.C. 20555  
                                     
                              January 16, 1984 

Information Notice No. 84-05:   EXERCISE FREQUENCY 

Addressees: 

All nuclear power reactor facilities holding an operating license (OL) or 
construction permit (CP). 

Purpose: 

This information notice is provided to bring to the attention of licensees 
certain requirements contained in the final rule (44 CFR 350) published by 
the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA). It is expected that 
recipients will review the information for applicability to their 
facilities. No written response is required. 

Description of Circumstances: 

On September 28, 1983, FEMA published in the Federal Register (48 FR 44332) 
their final rule 44 CFR 350, "Review and Approval of State and Local 
Radiological Emergency Plans and Preparedness." This rule (1) establishes 
policy, procedures and criteria for the review and approval by FEMA of State
and local emergency plans and preparedness for coping with the offsite 
effects of radiological emergencies which may occur at commercial nuclear 
power facilities; and (2) changes the exercise frequency for State and local
governments to a biennial requirement [see 44 CFR 350.9(c)(1)-(4)] and 
introduces the concept of remedial exercises [Part 350.9(c)(5)]. This rule 
became effective October 28, 1983. 

The NRC published in the Federal Register on July 21, 1983 (48 FR 33307), a 
proposed amendment to its regulations [10 CFR 50, Appendix E, Part IV. 
F.1.a] to provide flexibility for exercise participants in regard to the 
required frequency and extent of participation in emergency preparedness 
exercises. The proposed regulation would retain the presently required 
annual full participation exercise with the proviso that if all major 
elements in the emergency plan are performed in a satisfactory manner during 
the annual exercise, a finding may be made that another full participation 
exercise with State and local governments would not be required for a period 
of up to two years. The comment period for the NRC proposed rule expired 
September 19, 1983. 




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The NRC staff is currently reviewing the comments received on the proposed 
rule including FEMA's action on the exercise frequency for State and local 
governments with the intent of making a recommendation to the Commission in 
the near future. In recognition of the respective responsibilities for 
emergency preparedness, the NRC and FEMA staffs are coordinating to achieve 
compatible language for their respective regulations. 

The Commission recognizes that State and local governments may be planning 
for the transition from annual to biennial frequency under the FEMA rule [44
CFR 350.9(c)(1) - (4)]. The Commission will act expeditiously to complete 
its rulemaking proceeding and to resolve any inconsistencies with the FEMA 
rule that may result. In the interim, until the proposed amendment to the 
NRC's regulation has been revised (incorporating the appropriate public 
comments), considered by the Commission and issued in final form, licensees 
should continue to follow the current exercise frequency requirement as 
stated in the NRC regulations (Section IV. F.1 of Appendix E to 10 CFR Part 
50). Until completion of the current NRC rulemaking proceeding, NRC 
licensees may only conform with the FEMA rule by specific request for 
exemption from the NRC requirement. 

No written response to this information notice is required. If you need 
additional information regarding this matter, please contact the Regional 
Administrator of the appropriate NRC Regional Office, or this Office. 



                                   Edward L. Jordan, Director 
                                   Division of Emergency Preparedness 
                                     and Engineering Response 
                                   Office of Inspection and Enforcement 

Technical Contact:  David B. Matthews, IE 
                    (301) 492-9647 

Attachments: 
1.   FEMA Rule 44 CFR 350 (In Part), dated 9/28/83 
2.   NRC Proposed Rule, dated 7/21/83 
3.   List of Recently Issued IE Information Notices 
Page Last Reviewed/Updated Tuesday, November 12, 2013