United States Nuclear Regulatory Commission - Protecting People and the Environment

Spent Fuel Transportation Fire Studies

Sponsored by the Office of Nuclear Material Safety and Safeguards

This poster depicts NRC’s studies of truck and rail transport accidents involving fires in regard to regulatory requirements for shipment of spent nuclear fuel (SNF). The agency initiated these studies in response to a 2006 National Academy of Sciences review of procedures and regulations. Although accidents involving SNF have not occurred by rail or roadway, the fire accident scenarios were based on severe historical railway and roadway fires in terms of their potential impact on SNF containers.

The combined summary of this work on fire accidents demonstrates that current NRC regulations and packaging standards provide a high degree of protection to public health and safety against releases of radioactive material in real world transportation accidents, if such events were to involve SNF containers.

Page Last Reviewed/Updated Friday, June 09, 2017