Utilizing a Multi-disciplined Team during Job Planning
A project involved decontamination and demolition of a manufacturing facility with a floor space of
120,000 ft2 that included metallurgical processing and fabrication of uranium metal components. An
initial inspection showed the potential for chemical, radiological, and asbestos contamination throughout
the building where the structural integrity was suspect. Of major importance for decontamination within
the structure and the eventual demolition of the structure was the condition of the roof.
For decommissioning planning purposes, it was necessary to characterize the roof and associated support
structures, particularly for radiological contamination and asbestos composition of insulation. This would
require access to the roof. Before initiating characterization activities, a licensed structural engineer
completed a structural inspection and evaluation. This evaluation determined that 70 percent of the roof
area and associated structures were not sufficient to support personnel egress. The evaluation identified
pathways that were sound, and structural supports that could be used to attach personnel fall protection.
Access control was established for entry onto the roof. This was coordinated with the radiation protection
and industrial hygiene specialist to ensure that adequate access would be available to complete the
additional characterization activities necessary to support decommissioning planning.
As a result of the integrated approach, with an emphasis on structural integrity as being significant to
worker safety, the characterization and subsequent decontamination and structural demolition activities
were planned and executed with no worker injuries or lost time accidents and without releases of
hazardous substances into the environment.
Using Historical Information to Supplement Facility Characterization
During the planning of characterization activities for the decommissioning of a surplus test reactor
building, a historical research effort into past hot cell programmatic operations revealed the following key
(1) Inspections and handling of nuclear fuel containing significant quantities of fission products and
loose alpha contamination were of major concern. Historical reports provided information on the
nature of the materials inspected in the hot cells.
(2) Facility descriptions and operational procedures highlighted the use of an underground hot waste
catch tank fed from hot cell drains.