A radiation emergency may exist if unplanned exposure to radioactive material is possible due to loss, misplaced material or accident; or if same loss, misplaced material or accident may result in contamination of facilities or spread of contamination out of control. Since an emergency requires immediate action to reduce harm or damage, mCi quantities should be considered an emergency and uCi quantities should be considered an incident.

Emergency Procedure (mCi)

Persons having knowledge of a possible radiation emergency should do the following:

  1. Contain material as per lab emergency procedures
  2. Keep uninvolved people out of area until cleanup or appropriate measures are completed.
  3. Call EHS to:
    1. Report the problem, stating whether emergency help is needed.
    2. Arrange for assistance and/or final survey.
    3. Record results of final survey to document adequate response.

Incident Procedure (uCi)

Persons having knowledge of a radiation incident should do the following:

  1. Contain the material to minimize contamination.
  2. Keep uninvolved people out of area while cleaning up the spill, etc.
  3. Report to the Radiation Safety Office as deemed appropriate.
  4. Record results of final survey to document adequate response.

The Radiation Safety Office will:

  1. Supervise cleanup or restriction of area until emergency no longer exists.
  2. Determine that available personnel have cleaned area or have emergency in hand.
  3. Determine if report must be made to regulatory agencies in case of loss of material or exposure of personnel, and make the necessary report.

Report all emergencies that threaten life or property to 911.

For other incidents requiring Radiation Safety assistance, call EHS at 919-962-5507 during normal working hours, or 911 after hours.

Proceed to Chapter 8:
Personnel Monitoring