NRC Seeks Comments on Revised Dose Limits to Lens of the Eye

The agency says the international radiation protection community may follow the International Commission on Radiological Protection's recommended limit of of 20 mSv (2 rem) per year, versus the current U.S. limit of 150 mSv (15 rem) per year.

The Nuclear Regulatory Commission has asked for comments from stakeholders about possibly lowering the current U.S. occupational exposure limit for radiation to the lens of the eye. NRC hasn't begun rulemaking on the issue, but its notices said the international radiation protection community may follow the International Commission on Radiological Protection's recent recommended limit of of 20 mSv (2 rem) per year, averaged over defined periods of 5 years, with no single year exceeding 50 mSv (5 rem). The current U.S. limit is seven times higher: 150 mSv (15 rem) per year.

"In particular, the International Atomic Energy Agency has specifically considered and is now incorporating, the new limits into the revision of the International Basic Safety Standards for Protection against Ionizing Radiation and for the Safety of Radiation Sources," NRC's notice stated.

Protecting the eyes against the effects of ionizing radiation is designed primarily to prevent the formation of cataracts, and the sensitive part of the eye for this health effect is the lens. it noted. The radiation dose to the eye is defined by 10 CFR 20.1003 as the lens dose equivalent (LDE) at a tissue depth of 0.3 centimeters. Cataract formation falls under the class of radiation effects referred to as deterministic (tissue reactions, in current ICRP terminology). "At doses above the threshold, the severity of cataract formation increases with dose, but the radiation-induced incidence below the threshold dose is believed to be essentially zero. Currently, 10 CFR part 20 limits annual occupational exposures to the lens of the eye to 150 mSv (15 rem) per year (10 CFR 20.1201)," the notice said.

NRC asked for comments on the ICRP recommendations by Oct. 31. The commission said it seeks early input before making any decision about whether to consider this issue for future rulemaking.

To submit a comment, visit www.regulations.gov and search Docket ID NRC-2009-0279.

Download Center

HTML - No Current Item Deck
  • Free Safety Management Software Demo

    IndustrySafe Safety Management Software helps organizations to improve safety by providing a comprehensive toolset of software modules to help businesses identify trouble spots; reduce claims, lost days, OSHA fines; and more.

  • Track Key Safety Performance Indicators

    IndustrySafe’s Dashboard Module allows organizations to easily track safety KPIs and metrics. Gain increased visibility into your business’ operations and safety data.

  • Analyze Incident Data

    Collect relevant incident data, analyze trends, and generate accurate regulatory reports, including OSHA 300, 300A, and 301 logs, through IndustrySafe’s extensive incident reporting and investigation module.

  • Safety Training 101

    When it comes to safety training, no matter the industry, there are always questions regarding requirements and certifications. We’ve put together a guide on key safety training topics, requirements for certifications, and answers to common training questions.

  • Conduct EHS Inspections and Audits

    Record and manage your organization’s inspection data with IndustrySafe’s Inspections module. IndustrySafe’s pre-built forms and checklists may be used as is, or can be customized to better suit the needs of your organization.

  • Industry Safe
comments powered by Disqus

OH&S Digital Edition

  • OHS Magazine Digital Edition - March 2019

    March 2019

    Featuring:

    • HEARING PROTECTION
      Not Your Grandpa's Ear Muffs 
    • FALL PROTECTION
      Far Too Many Fatal Falls
    • DRUG TESTING
      Marijuana in the Workplace
    • FALL PREVENTION
      Ladder Safety Tips
    View This Issue