Manufacturing News

Government to review ANSTO practices after safety allegations

 Innovation minister Senator Kim Carr will review safety practices at Australian Nuclear Science and Technology Organisation’s (ANSTO) radiopharmaceutical production facility following a damning assessment of Australia’s only nuclear reactor facility.

A confidential report into ANSTO was revealed last week by the ABC, damning its safety practices and calling for a complete overhaul of its radio-pharmaceutical operation. 

According to Senator Carr, the Government is taking the allegations very seriously, and will launch an investigation of ANSTO’s facility.

“I am aware of incidents reported recently in the media, which took place at ANSTO’s radiopharmaceutical production facility in September 2007 and August 2008. These events are the subject of a Comcare investigation that is itself under review,” he said in a notice to the press.

“I take allegations such as those aired last night very seriously. I have been closely monitoring these events for a considerable time.

“I have asked my Department to examine the operation of the ANSTO radiopharmaceutical production facility and the OH&S practices in place at present at the facility. 

“As part of the review, my Department will also seek the assistance of the Australian Radiation Protection and Nuclear Safety Agency (ARPANSA), the independent regulator, with respect to ANSTO’s compliance with the facility licence.”

The Comcare report was originally obtained by the ABC has found the Australian Nuclear Science and Technology Organisation, or ANSTO, had ‘under-reported’ accidents and breached safety standards. 

ANSTO could potentially face fines of hundreds of thousands of dollars if the allegations are found to be true.

See the original ABC report here.

The Comcare report of the ANSTO investigation can be found here.

ANSTO’s response to the Comcare report can be found here.


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