A WORKER at the Sellafield nuclear plant in west Cumbria has tested positive for coronavirus.

In a statement issued within the last hour, a spokesman for the company said: "We can confirm that a Sellafield Ltd employee working at the Sellafield site has been diagnosed with covid-19. The employee followed NHS advice and is now in self-isolation.

"We are in contact with Public Health England and are following their advice to protect our employees and partners, while maintaining our focus on the safety and security of the Sellafield site.

"In common with organisations nationwide, we will continue to closely monitor the Covid-19 situation to understand and manage any potential impacts upon our people and our business."

The spokesman said the plant is operating normally at present, though the situation will remain under review.

He said all Sellfield employees have been and are being urged to follow the official guidance from Public Health England and the Department of Health at nhs.uk/coronavirus "We will not comment further on individual cases," he added.

In a statement to staff today, Sellafield's management issued detailed guidance to its workforce, and said it would cease all but essential business travel and introduce more video conferencing.

The document said: "In response to the regional and national positions, and taking a risk-based approach, we are implementing additional restrictions on business travel and large gatherings.

"Employees are not to undertake business travel from their routine place of work unless it is essential.

In addition, review any large meetings and events (20 people or more) and arrange to hold them by video-conference where possible or postpone them if necessary.

"These arrangements take effect from Monday 16 March 2020."