Emergency planning is an important part of the defence-in-depth approach to managing the site’s radiological and chemical hazards.
The site has well-rehearsed emergency arrangements to safeguard the workforce, public and the environment in the event of an emergency.
The site’s emergency plan is an important part of the safety arrangements, and describes how the site will respond to an emergency. It is essential under national regulations and the arrangements are regulated by the Office for Nuclear Regulation.
Exercises are held routinely to demonstrate the adequacy of these arrangements and enable key personnel to practice and rehearse their roles.
In the event of an emergency at Dounreay, Police Scotland will inform the public about what is happening and any precautions that may be necessary. Police Scotland also takes the lead in the release of information to the media during an emergency.
Other external organisations will have key roles to perform in an emergency at Dounreay. The response of those organisations is summarised in the off-site emergency plan produced by the Highland Council.
DSRL has a duty press officer on call 24 hours a day in support of the site’s emergency arrangements.
The emergency planning zone is the area around the site where public protection measures are planned in detail in advance. The boundary reflects the worst-case radiation emergency that can be reasonably foreseen, resulting in potential exposure of the public to five millisieverts or more of radiation (the average annual exposure to a member of the public from all sources of radiation is 2.2 millisieverts).
Following a review of the hazards now present at Dounreay, the emergency planning zone was reduced from 5km to just over 1km in 2009.
Download the site emergency plan produced by DSRL.
A booklet about what to do in an emergency is produced for residents in close proximity to the nuclear sites at Dounreay and Vulcan.