Mike Weightman

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Dr Mike Weightman is the UK's chief nuclear safety inspector.


Weightman was formally appointed as HM Chief Inspector of Nuclear Installations and Director of HSE’s Nuclear Safety Directorate in April 2005. He sits on the HSE Board and helps set the strategic direction of HSE.

Formally, he was a Deputy Chief Inspector of Nuclear Installations and headed the Division of HSE’s Nuclear Safety Directorate (NSD) that regulates the UK’s nuclear power station sites, both operating and decommissioning. Prior to that, he led the NSD Division that regulates BNFL and Urenco nuclear fuel cycle sites including Sellafield, and held a number of previous posts in HSE, including heading up a policy unit. [1]

Weightman joined HSE’s Nuclear Installations Inspectorate (NII) in 1988 from a senior manager post in the nuclear industry. Before 1988 he had worked in the industry for 13 years with various management roles in research, operations and engineering projects.


Tasked with reviewing UK nuclear safety and lessons to be learned from the 2011 Fukushima disaster, Weightman was accused of 'complacency' after he gave UK reactors the all-clear in a May 2011 interim report. The Guardian reported that

An enormous row broke out on Wednesday after the chief nuclear safety inspector gave Britain's reactor fleet the all-clear and made modest "recommendations" to be incorporated in the planned new plant design.
Critics immediately accused Mike Weightman of rushing to judgment and "complacency" in his interim report on the lessons to be learned from the Fukushima atomic crisis.
The safety boss said there was no need to curtail the operations of atomic plants in Britain, given that conditions in Japan were so different, but wanted a review of backup power supplies, ventilation procedures and plant layout.

Mike Weightman denied being under political pressure after he said there was no need to curtail UK atomic operations.[2]


Resources and Notes



  1. Mike Weightman, IAEA undated
  2. Terry MacalisterNuclear inspector accused of complacency after reactors get all-clear, theguardian.com, Thursday 19 May 2011