Design decisions for cleanup activities should consider the duration of the
specific activity, the complexity of the activity, the hazard consequences, and
the hardware salvaged for use at the next activity. Costly designs and
equipment may need to be provided, even for short duration activities, for safe
operation. To make these items cost effective, designs should include
provisions to make the hardware portable (or at least easily salvageable).
Designs should also consider modular items that can be installed with different
modules to fit a particular application. The following sections address general
D&D Hazards Reduction . Because the initial stages of decommissioning are
generally hands-on operations in many facilities, personnel exposure issues
should form a large part of the project planning efforts. The best hazard
reduction is to remove the hazards as early as possible in the project for any
type of hazard, thereby reducing the opportunity for exposure. The sections
below provide specific examples of project planning, sequencing, lessons
learned, or technology options that should be considered for hazards reduction
in a D&D project.
Chemical Exposure . Bulk chemical removal as soon as possible in the project
is usually an excellent choice from both a safety and regulatory viewpoint.
Residual chemicals in piping systems and dead legs should always be drained
and contained with industrial exposure; maximum expected volume issues
should drive the draining and containment methods. Even " mpty"systems
can contain significant volumes of liquids within level, sagging, or residue dams
that could be invisible from any external inspection of the systems. Application
of ALARA principles to chemical hazards should be applied with the same rigor
as to radiological exposure.
Operating from a position of knowledge is always preferred, but every project
should be planned with some realization that exact chemical mixtures,
volumes, and locations of liquids will not be known when the piping system is
actually breached. The watchword for any chemical system clean-out or
removal is to expect surprises.