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Ionising Radiations Regulations 2017 (IRR17) Guidance - Part 6 - Arrangements for the control of radioactive substances, articles and equipment

IRR17 (29) - Accounting for Radioactive Substances

An employer must keep records of the quantity and location of radioactive substances and sources. They must be kept for at least 2 years after they were made and for at least 2 years after disposal of the radioactive material.

The records should be in a format that will allow loss of any significant quantity of radioactive material to be readily identified. Frequency of checking will depend on likely movements of material and how they are used (e.g. dilutions).

The ACoP to IRR99 states that for static sources attached to machines, the interval between checks may be up to 1 month. Portable source checks may need to be made on daily basis

ACoP paragraph 495 is very important. This paragraph has the legal status of ‘guidance’ and therefore following it can be assumed to be acceptable, if not, best practice. It states that employers who are subject to the requirements of the Radioactive Substances Act 1993 (or exemption orders made under the Act), may use a single system of accounting which satisfies both sets of legal requirements.

Many radiation employers then utilise the Radiation Protection Supervisor (RPS) to ensure that accounting under IRR99 and the Radioactive Substances Act 1993 is compliant. As mentioned earlier this is one reason why a RPS may be appointed regardless of the legal need to do so (i.e. where these is no legal need to designate an area as Supervised or Controlled).

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