Information Notice No. 86-17: Update of Failure of Automatic Sprinkler System Valves to Operate

                                                          SSINS No : 6835 
                                                          IN 86-17        

                                UNITED STATES
                            WASHINGTON, DC 20555

                               March 24, 1986

                                   SYSTEM VALVES TO OPERATE 


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


This is a notice of the continuing problems of the operational failure of 
6-inch deluge and pre-action fire protection water control valves, 
identified as Model C, manufactured by Automatic Sprinkler Corporation of 
America (ASCOA) of Cleveland, Ohio This notice supplements information 
contained in Information Notice (IN) 84-16, issued on March 2, 1984 

It is expected that recipients will review the information for applicability 
to their facilities and consider actions, if appropriate, to preclude 
similar problems from occurring at their facilities However, suggestions 
contained in this information notice do not constitute NRC requirements; 
therefore, no specific action or written response is required 

Description of Circumstances: 

The NRC received a copy of a notification from ASCOA in January of 1986 
stating that previous instructions issued to customers in late 1984 or early 
1985 concerning maintenance to the 6-inch Model C deluge and pre-action 
valve was inadequate to prevent the failure-to-actuate problems that had 
been experienced In September of 1983, Mississippi Power and Light reported 
the failure of one of these valves to actuate during a fire in the emergency 
diesel/generator and the failures of two other identical valves to actuate 
during tests These events and subsequent licensee findings are detailed in 
IN 84-16 That information notice stated that ASCOA was evaluating the 

In June of 1984, ASCOA concluded in a letter to NRC that the Grand Gulf 
events were plant unique In November of 1984, ASCOA informed the NRC that 
three separate reports of the 6-inch Model C valve failing to actuate under 
certain circumstances had caused them to re-evaluate their previous 
conclusion They provided NRC with an advanced copy of instructions to 
customers on the nature of the problem, identification of affected systems, 
and a recommended course of action to be taken to correct the problem ASCOA 
stated this notification would be sent to all their nuclear customers 


                                                            IN 86-17      
                                                            March 24, 1986 
                                                            Page 2 of 2   

The most recent ASCOA instructions (circa January 1986) supersede the 
previous instructions and state that the previously recommended maintenance 
procedure is inadequate These instructions provide what is termed a 
"temporary solution " A tentative date for availability of a permanent 
solution, additional information for identification of affected valves, and 
a course of action described by ASCOA as "required" for the elimination of 
the problem are also given However, it is not clear that this notification 
has been sent to all nuclear customers Licensees who have not received this 
communication from ASCOA are encouraged to contact their ASCOA 
representative for this important information 

No specific action or written response is required by this 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:  Mary S Wegner, IE

Attachment: List of Recently Issued IE Information Notices


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