Nuclear Safety and Health:

Nonconforming Products Are A Governmentwide Problem

T-RCED-91-9: Published: Mar 6, 1991. Publicly Released: Mar 6, 1991.

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GAO discussed contractors' supply of nonconforming products to the federal government. GAO noted that: (1) nuclear utilities installed or received such nonconforming products as fasteners, steel, fuses, pumps, valves, and circuit breakers in about 64 percent of the 113 domestic nuclear power plants; (2) nonconforming products were a governmentwide problem, since the Department of Defense, Department of Energy, Department of Transportation, Federal Aviation Administration, and National Aeronautics and Space Administration found them in weapons systems, submarines, aircraft, and the space shuttle; (3) the Nuclear Regulatory Commission reduced its regulatory influence over the nuclear industry by delaying procurement inspections for at least 1 year and withdrawing civil penalties against utilities; (4) there was no governmentwide effort to address nonconforming products, since the Office of Management and Budget failed to fulfill its 1988 committment to act as an information clearinghouse; and (5) federal agencies could benefit from sharing information on their receipt of nonconforming products.

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