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2.4.12 Review of the historical site assessment

The planning team should ensure that someone (a first reviewer) conducts a detailed review of the historical site assessment report for internal consistency and as a quality-control mechanism. A second reviewer with considerable site assessment experience should then examine the entire information package to assure consistency and to provide an independent evaluation of the historical site assessment conclusions. The second reviewer also evaluates the package to determine if special circumstances exist where radioactivity may be present but not identified in the historical site assessment. Both the first reviewer and a second independent reviewer should examine the historical site assessment written products to ensure internal consistency in the report’s information, summarized data, and conclusions. The site review ensures that the historical site assessment recommendations are appropriate.

An important quality assurance objective is to find and correct errors. A significant inconsistency indicating either an error or a flawed conclusion, if undetected, could contribute to an inappropriate recommendation. Identifying such a discrepancy directs the historical site assessment investigator and site reviewers to re-examine and resolve the apparent conflict.

Under some circumstances, experienced investigators may have differing interpretations of site conditions and draw differing conclusions or hypotheses regarding the likelihood of contamination. Any such differences should be resolved during the review. If a reviewer’s interpretations contradict those of the historical site assessment investigator, the two should discuss the situation and reach a consensus. This aspect of the review identifies significant points about the site evaluation that may need detailed explanation in the historical site assessment narrative report to fully support the conclusions. Throughout the review, the investigator from the authorities and site reviewers should keep in mind the need for conservative judgments in the absence of definitive proof to avoid underestimating the presence of contamination, which could lead to an inappropriate historical site assessment recommendation.