If you have any concerns regarding radiation safety contact Mike Bell the University Radiation Protection Officer
Radiation Protection is concerned with protection from two key forms of radiation.
Ionising Radiation (IR)
Radiation that produces ionisation in matter, examples include cosmic radiation, alpha particles, gamma rays and X-rays. When these radiations pass through the tissues of the body they have sufficient energy to damage DNA.
The use of Ionising Radiation in the workplace is controlled by two primary sets of legislation – the Ionising Radiation Regulations 1999 (IRR99) and the Environmental Permitting Regulations 2010 (EPR2010).
The application of these two pieces of legislation within the University are governed by the Ionising Radiation Policy.
Additionally, further ‘Local Rules’ will be found within each radiation work area to establish full control to meet the regulations.
All ionising radiation workers must be registered with the University Radiation Protection Service, this includes researchers working with ionising radiation outside the University e.g. research reactors, cyclotrons etc.
See also the Guidance notes for returns forms pages to download the Usage and Disposal and Monthly Returns forms.
Non-Ionising Radiation (NIR)
Radiation that does not have sufficient energy to produce ionisation in matter e.g. ultraviolet, visible light, infrared and radiofrequency radiation. The health hazards of NIR are very wave length dependant.
The use of lasers in the workplace will come under this section.
There is currently no specific legislation in this sector except for the general health & safety regulation under the Health & Safety Act 1974 and the Management Regulations 1999.
New legislation is being enacted as follows:
- Physical Agents (EMF) Directive – applies from 30 April 2012
- Physical Agents (Optical Radiation) Directive – applies from 27 April 2010.
- The Optical Radiation Directive covers ultraviolet, infrared and visible light, but only from artificial sources i.e. lasers are included in this Directive.
Radiation Protection Team
The Health & Safety Office manages a Radiation Protection team who ensure that any work with radiation is carried out legally and safely. This team comprises:
- Radiation Protection Adviser
- Radiation Protection Officer
- College Radiation Protection Officers & Supervisors
- College Laser Safety Officers
This team is available to help all staff and students with justifications, risk assessments, practical radiation management, radiological health and safety and radioactive waste management.