United States Nuclear Regulatory Commission - Protecting People and the Environment

Information Notice No. 85-97: Jail Term for Former Contractor Employee who Intentionally Falsified Welding Inspection Records

                                                        SSINS No.:  6835
                                                            IN 85-97 

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

                             December 26, 1985 

Information Notice No. 85-97:   JAIL TERM FOR FORMER CONTRACTOR EMPLOYEE 
                                   WHO INTENTIONALLY FALSIFIED WELDING 
                                   INSPECTION  RECORDS 

Addressees: 

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

Purpose: 

This information notice is to inform licensees, contractors and their 
employees of the criminal prosecution by the U.S. Department of Justice of a 
contractor QC inspector employed at the Seabrook Nuclear Power Station, and 
a resultant jail sentence. The individual intentionally falsified records of 
liquid penetrant and magnetic particle testing of welding joints in piping, 
pipe braces and structural steel. The NRC suggests that recipients review 
and provide widespread dissemination of this notice to employees and 
contractors' employees involved in safety-related activities, especially 
those employees involved in making and keeping records. The NRC further 
suggests that recipients remind their own and contractor employees that not 
only are licensees subject to civil enforcement action for violations of NRC
requirements, but individuals who intentionally violate these requirements 
are also subject to criminal prosecution. The suggestions for dissemination 
of this notice do not constitute NRC requirements; therefore, no specific 
action or written response is required. 

Description of Circumstances: 

In March 1983, management of Pullman Higgins (P-H), principal contractor for
construction of the Seabrook Nuclear Power Station, identified deficiencies 
in a QC inspection report of liquid penetrant and magnetic particle testing.
Rather than assuming the deficiency to be an isolated occurrence, P-H 
investigated other reports prepared by the individual and found similar 
deficiencies. As a result, the individual's employment was terminated in 
April 1983. 

Subsequently, during an investigation conducted by the NRC's Office of 
Investigation (OI), the individual, after initial denial, admitted 
falsifying the inspection reports in that he documented work as being 
complete and acceptable when, in fact, he had not performed the inspection 
of the work. Further, the individual also admitted that he had lied on his 
job application and resume regarding his formal education and previous NDE 
certification. The case was 

8512230036 

.

                                                         IN 85-97 
                                                         Page 2 of 2 
                                                         December 26, 1985 

referred to the Department of Justice and on September 30, 1985, the U.S. 
Attorney in New Hampshire announced that the individual was sentenced to six
months imprisonment and three years probation ,following his guilty plea to 
two counts of an indictment charging, under 18 U.S.C. 1001, that he filed 
false statements on documents required by the NRC to be maintained. 

Discussion: 

Licensees have the responsibility to ensure the safe construction and opera-
tion of nuclear power generating facilities to ensure quality in all 
licensed activities. In so doing, licensees must not only use trained 
individuals, maintain accurate records, and provide adequate procedures, but 
must also exercise supervision over their employees and their contractor 
employees to assure adherence to procedures and NRC requirements. While 
violations of NRC requirements caused by inattention to detail or human 
error are unacceptable to the NRC and may result in civil enforcement 
action, they do not subject individuals to criminal prosecution. However, 
violations caused by intentional acts may subject corporations, the 
individual wrongdoer, and others who knew and condoned his acts to criminal 
prosecution. As evidenced by this reported case, the criminal sanctions 
available may include a jail sentence. 

No specific action or written response is required by this information 
notice. If you have any questions about this matter, please contact the 
Regional Administrator of the appropriate regional office or this office. 


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

Technical Contact:  Steve Burns, ELD 
                    492-7268 

Attachment:    List of Recently Issued Information Notices 
Page Last Reviewed/Updated Tuesday, November 12, 2013