[Federal Register Volume 68, Number 240 (Monday, December 15, 2003)]
[Page 69730]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 03-30859]



Draft Criteria for Determining Feasibility of Manual Actions To 
Achieve Post-Fire Safe Shutdown

AGENCY: Nuclear Regulatory Commission.

ACTION: Extension of opportunity for public comment.


SUMMARY: The U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) is considering a 
revision to the fire protection regulations in 10 CFR Part 50, Appendix 
R, Paragraph III.G.2 to allow the use of manual actions by nuclear 
power plant operators to achieve hot shutdown conditions in the event 
of fires in certain areas provided the actions are evaluated against 
specific criteria and determined to be acceptable. For complying with 
the requirements of Appendix R, Paragraph III.G.2, licensees who rely 
on operator manual actions which have not been reviewed and approved by 
the NRC are generally considered to be in non-compliance. However, the 
NRC believes that manual actions relied upon by licensees are safe and 
effective if they meet appropriate acceptance criteria. Accordingly, 
until the fire protection regulations are revised, the NRC is planning 
to issue an interim enforcement policy to exercise enforcement 
discretion for non-compliant licensees if their manual actions meet the 
NRC's interim acceptance criteria. The NRC is seeking public comments 
on the adequacy and clarity of draft interim acceptance criteria. On 
November 26, 2003 (68 FR 66501), the NRC published its draft interim 
acceptance criteria in the Federal Register. The 30 day comment period 
established for these criteria was to have expired on December 26, 
2003. In letters dated November 26 and December 2, 2003, the Nuclear 
Information and Resource Service and the Union of Concerned Scientists 
requested a 30 day extension to the comment period. The letters noted 
that the comment period included two major holidays and stated that the 
additional time was needed to research the issues and provide 
meaningful comments. Similar requests were made by many other members 
of the public. In view of the importance of meaningful stakeholder 
input on these criteria, the NRC has decided to extend the comment 
period by 30 days.

DATES: The comment period has been extended and now expires on January 
26, 2004.

ADDRESSES: Submit written comments to the Chief, Rules and Directives 
Branch, Division of Administrative Services, Office of Administration, 
U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission, Mail Stop T6-D59, Washington, DC 
20555-0001. Comments may be submitted by e-mail to nrcrep@nrc.gov. 
Comments may be delivered to the NRC's headquarters at Two White Flint 
North, 11545 Rockville Pike, Rockville, Maryland 20852.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Richard Dudley, Office of Nuclear 
Reactor Regulation, Washington, DC 20555-0001, telephone (301) 415-
1116, e-mail rfd@nrc.gov or Ray Gallucci, telephone (301) 415-1255, e-
mail rhg@nrc.gov.

    Dated at Rockville, Maryland, this 9th day of December, 2003.

    For the Nuclear Regulatory Commission.
Catherine Haney,
Program Director, Policy and Rulemaking Program, Division of Regulatory 
Improvement Programs, Office of Nuclear Reactor Regulation.
[FR Doc. 03-30859 Filed 12-12-03; 8:45 am]