Three Mile Island Nuclear generating Station
July, 17 1996
No. 12 - 96
GPU Nuclear Evaluating Work Processes and Staffing Levels at TMI-1 and Oyster Creek Generating Stations
Parsippany, NJ --- GPU Nuclear Corporation is evaluating work processes and staffing levels necessary to support safe operation of the GPU System’s two nuclear plants – Three Mile Island Unit 1 in Middletown, PA and Oyster Creek in Forked River, NJ.
It is expected that as a result of the evaluations there will be fewer employees operating and supporting operations at the nuclear stations.
The actions come as GPU System companies evaluate their position, readying for impending competition in the electric business.
"As the electric utility business changes in preparation for competition, we recognize the importance of maintaining the highest attention to public health and safety, yet we must operate at lower costs," said GPU Nuclear President T. Gary Broughton.
Broughton explained that many GPU Nuclear departments are examining the work and the work processes needed to support safe operations of the plants. Duplication and overlapping work is being eliminated. Work processes are being streamlined.
Two recent examples of gaining efficiencies are in the company’s Engineering activities, where it is expected that up to one-quarter of the engineering positions will be eliminated this year, and in the Materials and Service are, where 21 position, or about 25 percent of the staff, were reduced.
In each case, workers within the departments and those working closely with the departments came together to redesign how the work gets accomplished in a more efficient manner, without diminishing attention to safety.
"During the past 15 years, GPU Nuclear has completed major plant modifications at TMI and at Oyster Creek. Our plants are running extremely well now, and we no longer need large numbers of engineers designing plant modification. Fewer resources are needed to support this reduced level of activity," Broughton added.
There will be review over the next year throughout the company focusing on work processes.
"We do not have a target employee count in mind for staffing. We are first restructuring the organization based on changes in the industry and on reduced levels of work needed a the sites and at the headquarters," Broughton explained.
"While intuition may suggest that large budgets and large staffs result in better operating plants, industry experience shows quite the opposite. Those nuclear plants with fewer employees and smaller budgets are operating with the highest capacity factors and the best performance ratings from regulators." Broughton said.
"The GPU System nuclear plants are currently among the best in operation. Our goal is to minimize our costs by improving efficiency of operations. We intend to continue to strengthen our emphasis on safety and the pursuit of excellence," Broughton added.