United States Nuclear Regulatory Commission - Protecting People and the Environment

Information Notice No. 98-08: Information Likely to be Requested if an Emergency is Declared


March 2, 1998



All Parts 30, 40, 70, 72, and 76 licensees and certificate holders required to have a Nuclear Regulatory Commission-approved Emergency Plan.


NRC is issuing this information notice to provide the addressees with the information expected by NRC when an Alert or Site Area Emergency is declared, in accordance with an NRC-approved Emergency Plan. It is expected that the recipients will review the information for applicability to their facilities and consider actions, as appropriate. However, suggestions contained in this information notice are not NRC regulations; therefore, no specific action nor written response is required.

Description of Circumstances:

NRC participated in a gaseous diffusion plant emergency exercise in September 1997. During the lessons-learned session, the NRC identified the need to promptly obtain certain essential time-sensitive information from the affected facility to independently assess potential health and safety consequences, to evaluate the facility's condition, and to determine the adequacy of the facility's protective measures.


When the NRC Operations Center is activated, the NRC emergency response teams will be called in to staff the Operations Center. The NRC emergency response teams monitor the licensee's/certificate holders' response to ensure timely communication and coordination of safety or safeguards significant information; evaluate the licensee's/certificate holders' current and longer-term response to the event; and ensure the protection of the worker, the public, and the environment.

Information Notice 93-60 and its Supplement were issued to alert the addressees of issues associated with the initial reporting of safety-related events to the NRC Operations Center. After the initial reporting, if the NRC Operations Center is activated, NRC will request additional information from the regulatee. The regulatee's personnel communicating with NRC should be knowledgeable with the facility's operation and with the event to provide and update information about the evolving incident. The level of communication between NRC and the regulatee will depend on the development and the significance of the event. The following is a list of sample questions, which are not exhaustive, that may be asked during an emergency:

  1. Is there any change to the classification of the event? If so, what is the reason?
  2. What is the ongoing/imminent damage to the facility, including affected equipment and safety features?
  3. Have toxic or radiological releases occurred or been projected, including changes in the release rate? If so, what is the projected onsite and offsite releases, and what is the basis of assessment?
  4. What are the health effect/consequences to onsite/offsite people? How many onsite/offsite people are/will be affected and to what extent?
  5. Is the event under control? When was control established, or what is the planned action to bring the event under control? What is the mitigative action underway or planned?
  6. What onsite protective measures have been taken or planned?
  7. What offsite protective actions have been recommended to State/local officials?
  8. What is the status of State/local/other Federal agencies' responses, if known?
  9. If applicable, what is the status of public information activities, such as alarm, broadcast, or press releases (regulatee/State/local/other Federal agencies)? Has a Joint Information Center been activated?

Related Generic Communications:

The following related communications and correspondence are noted:

  • NRC Information Notice 93-60, "Reporting Fuel Cycle and Materials Event to the NRC Operations Center," August 4, 1993.
  • NRC Information Notice 93-60, Supplement 1, " Reporting Fuel Cycle and Materials Event to the NRC Operations Center," October 20, 1994.

This information notice requires no specific action nor written response. If you have any question about the information in this notice, please contact one of the technical contacts listed below or the appropriate regional office.

Elizabeth Ten Eyck, Director
Division of Fuel Cycle Safety and Safeguards
Office of Nuclear Material Safety and Safeguards
Technical contacts: Yen-Ju Chen, NMSS
(301) 415-5615
e-mail: yjc@nrc.gov

Kevin M. Ramsey, NMSS
(301) 415-7887
e-mail: kmr@nrc.gov

(NUDOCS Accession Number 9802250023)
Page Last Reviewed/Updated Friday, May 22, 2015