A worker who saved his company £1.5million missed out on a reward because he put in his idea a day late.
Senior engineer Jarred Fraser managed to save the massive sum from the clean-up bill for Dounreay nuclear site in Caithness after his bright idea was taken up by his bosses who run a reward scheme for money saving innovations.
The original intention was to build an effluent treatment plant to deal with low-level radioactive waste produced by the decommissioning of Dounreay’s notorious underground shaft and silo.
Mr Fraser’s Eureka moment came when realised an existing building would be able to do the job.
His bosses at site licence company DSRL agreed with the intended redeployment of the building above the site’s cluster of low-active pits. It had been earmarked to be levelled once its current role was over. The switch has cut the cost of the scheme from £6million to about £4.5 million.
But his idea came a day too late for him to prosper under the company’s scheme which offered small cash sums and gift vouchers for ideas which could cut the £1.6billion cost of decommissioning the former fast reactor establishment near Thurso. Mr Fraser, a long serving employee at the site, said: “As I walked past the building constructed over the pits, I thought that it would be perfect to house the shaft and silo effluent treatment plant.”
More than 30 other ideas have helped cut planned expenditure by about £800,000. Together with Mr Fraser’s suggestion DSRL has saved £2.3million.
A spokeswoman for DSRL said that more 100 ideas had been submitted and 32 workers had received cash rewards totalling around £12,000. But Mr Fraser, who is in his 40s, was not one of them.
“There has to be a cut off point and unfortunately his idea came in a day too late,” she said.
“I think it is laudable that he still put it in regardless and I am sure the company will review giving him a reward. It is a huge amount of money he has saved. We will probably be running the scheme again – it has been a huge success.”
Mr Fraser was unconcerned and said: “I got a pat on the back from the boss and that was good enough for me.”
Three other workers also saved a big sum by coming up with a power washer on a pole with a camera monitor to clean the roof gutters which could be monitored by a camera. They each received £300.