It’s the 15th “National Safe Production Month”of this June, reporters from the Xinhua News Agency and China Electric Power News recently came to the site of Hongyange nuclear power project of CGN for interviews and personally experienced the safety culture of the plant. Here they personally participated the site safety training such as safety helmet impact, hole falling, etc. and even made asurprise visit to the construction site of the nuclear power unit, randomly inspected the safety equipment of site workers and questioned senior managers various details about safety. Finally, they gave out their comments as “nitpickers” of safety problems and witnessed the “confidence on safety” of CGN for going global.
Questioning CGN: why eyes on scaffoldings?
On the first day of interview, reporters attended the safety management practice presentation of CGN Hongyanhe nuclear power project. At the meeting, reporters showed great interest in the phenomenon that the project team of Hongyanhe nuclear power project paid great attention on scaffoldings. All ordinary scaffoldings at the construction site of Hongyanhe Phase II project have been replaced by galvanized scaffoldings and all constructors on scaffoldings have been specially examined. Tian Ruihang, General Manager of the project, stated that there are great risks for operation on scaffoldings, especially those used in coastal areas would be easily corroded. Any casualties would carry loss which is too great to estimate. “Life is priceless. No matter how much we spend on safety, it is worthwhile, because our safety target is ‘zero small injury’”.
Industrial accident rate for every 200,000 working hours of CGN is lower than 1% of European rate.
On the next day, reporters got the chance to interview the Safety Director of China Nuclear Power Engineering Co., Ltd. (CNPEC) Yuan Shujun. He spoke frankly that the purpose is to find out hidden hazards by all means so that they could be exposed and resolved. “Resolving today’s problems means prevention of tomorrow’s hazards.” Yuan Shujun stated that the industrial safety accident rate for every 200,000 working hours of CNPEC in 2015 was merely 0.0121, less than 1% of the average European rate and less than 0.5% of US rate.
Yuan Shujun said that in addition to the industrial safety in construction phase, the greatest challenge in safety of nuclear power construction would be the quality which includes design quality, installation and commissioning quality and management quality, they all require “doing things right in one go”. He explained with one example: when working on site, besides personal skill and knowledge, a worker still needs support from surrounding environment, like the influence of management, even as tiny as air quality, water quality and noise, these all will affect the attentiveness of the worker.
CNPEC also utilizes big data to secure safety. At the site of Hongyanhe nuclear power project, safety supervisors use cell phones to shoot possible hidden hazards and upload to the APP which is self-developed by the company. The data will be analyzed that night and apply correction instantly to make sure no place hidden by potential risks.
Live experienced the compulsory safety lesson of nuclear power for “new comers”
At the Monitoring and Access Control Center of Hongyanhe Phase II project, reporters acted once as nuclear power “new comers”. In Safety Helmet Impact Experience Zone, 3 trainees wore safety helmets correctly under the guidance of instructor. The 1.8m-tall reporter from China Electric Power News who is the tallest among all reporters firstly experienced and felt the “rod strike”. He admitted honestly that only after personally experiencing the “safety helmet impact” could help people to fully understand the significance of “Safety Helmet”.
According to the reporter from China Electric Power News, a boom could be felt like coming from internal brain the moment when the metal rod hit the safety helmet, made people helplessly to crouch. It’s not so hard to imagine what consequence this would bring if such force directly impact on the top of skull. When he turned around and glanced at the experience equipment, he subconsciously tighten up the helmet belt.
And in Hole Falling Experience Zone, the reporter was highly confident, “not any problem for jumping from the height less than one floor!” However in the moment the hole opens, he instantly changed this mind. “It’s totally different for the legs sudden drop without support compare with jumping intended. In a flash you even can feel the rapid boost of adrenaline level, only place the hope on the protective measures beneath the feet.”
The Safety Experience Zone where reporters visited is located at the entrance of Hongyanhe Nuclear Power Plant, which is also next to the Monitoring and Access Control Center. All 4500 employees working at the site of CGN Hongyanhe nuclear power project received safety training here before taking posts. This is a compulsory safety examination.
View of Reporters: nuclear power going global needs the “confidence on safety” like CGN’s
So far you may ask, what’s the meaning of safety culture to CGN? Big and red slogans hung everywhere at the construction site? Whistles in the hands of safety supervisors? Through his own observation, reporter from China Electric Power News found out the answer: “self-discipline”. He found out that all workers here would consciously fasten the safety belt while climbing high, take the zebra crossing even no vehicles pass and management would consciously organize the safety knowledge study. He said the best management is the self-discipline of the whole staff, which has been realized by Hongyanhe engineering team.
As a senior reporter with 16 years’ professional experience, reporter from Xinhua News Agency is very familiar with and impressed by the developing history of China’s nuclear power. After interview he appraised the safety management level of Hongyanhe nuclear power project as the best he has ever seen. It is not the rigorous ruels and regulations, full application of high tech methods nor the detail-oriented training for the new comers and institutions, but the safety awareness and veneration among them that rooted in his mind.
He said, “we need the support of science and technology to develop nuclear power, we also need to go global to expand industry, but the most of all is the confidence on safety like CGN’s.”