Swedish Nuclear Plant Posted Cleaners as Guards

October 30, 2008
The Associated Press
By LOUISE NORDSTROM, Associated Press Writer

Managers of an atomic power plant in Sweden used janitors to guard the
facility when the alarm system was malfunctioning, according to a critical
report Thursday from the country's nuclear watchdog.

In a statement on its Web site, the Swedish Radiation Safety Authority
called the incident at the Oskarshamn plant serious because the workers had
no training as security guards.

In early October, managers deployed 20-25 cleaning and maintenance
staff to help guard parts of the plant's perimeter, the statement said.

The workers worked in shifts for about a week and were instructed to
alert security if an outer fence was being breached, because motion sensors
in parts of the newly installed alarm system were not working. The
surveillance cameras and other security equipment still worked.

"OKG's decision to use non-security-educated personnel violates the
company's internal routines. It is particularly serious since the routine
deviation has been going on for a long time," the authority said in its

It also criticized the plant for not documenting the decision
properly, and said the incident "could be a sign of inadequate safety
culture regarding the attitude to physical protection."

In a separate statement, Oskarshamn said it had taken the criticism to
heart, and said it had based the decision on the fact that the inner
security fences had been intact, equipped with the necessary alarm and
surveillance equipment.

The Oskarshamn plant is located 210 miles (340 kilometers) south of
Stockholm. It has three reactors and provides around 10 percent of Sweden's