George Phillips, operations manager, shares how Cavendish Nuclear’s analytical laboratory in Cumbria is continuing to deliver critical work for nuclear industry customers, whilst protecting and ensuring a safe, protected environment for the workforce based there.
“We provide critical environmental and dosimetry analytical services to a number of the UK’s nuclear sites to ensure they meet their site license requirements. The outbreak of Coronavirus in the UK has not changed that important requirement.
“In the days before the UK wide lockdown, and since, we have been continually updating our customers with the situation at Greeson Court to give them confidence that we are able to continue to provide them with the services they require.
“Our usual day-to-day attendance of Cavendish staff at Greeson court is typically 60-70 people, so how are we providing this service to our customers whilst adhering to the required social distancing measures?
- All staff that could work from home and were not part of the laboratory analyst teams were sent home.
- We asked our customers what analysis is critical to their site. By having this conversation with all our customers we were able to agree what analysis streams were deemed critical and had to deliver results for. This allowed us to split the team into two teams and put staff on a weekly rotation thus enhancing social distancing at the labs but it also ensures each area of the facility has cover for processing samples as they are received.
- Break times and lunchtimes have been staggered to ensure there is minimal numbers in the communal areas during those times.
- Laboratory staff have been asked to use other offices, now free, for desk work as the offices in the lab areas are small and social distancing is impossible.
- Most communication, despite us being in the same building, is now over phone, email or Skype messaging.
- There is an enhanced use of PPE across the labs, such as gloves.
- Laboratory staff and our cleaning contractor are cleaning down the facility frequently on a daily basis.
“By working together and implementing and following the restrictions described, and by engaging with our customers we have been able to provide a safe environment which adheres to social distancing measures and which also enables us to continue to provide the critical analytical services required by our customers.
“I am exceptionally proud of the way my team has responded to the difficult changes in the way they work in a very, very short space of time, of the way they are looking out for one another and the way they are doing this and continuing to deliver for our customers and the nuclear industry.”
Cavendish Nuclear’s Laboratory Services – Cavendish Nuclear provides world-class analytical services from its Greeson Court environmental laboratories. The laboratories, located in a modern, purpose-built, 4,200 m2 facility in Whitehaven Cumbria UK, offer a wide range of leading edge analytical techniques for chemical, radiochemical and radiometric testing that can be applied to a wide array of environmental, biological and effluent samples. Analysis is conducted to support quality, safety and environmental standards, regulatory compliance, decommissioning, and research and testing programmes in the nuclear, civil and industrial sectors. Find out more here.
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