Reformed Radiation Act comes into force on Dec 15
12 Nov 2018, 03:07 ( 1 Month ago)
The reformed Radiation Act, which was approved by the President on November 9, will enter into force on December 15.
The aim on the reformed Radiation Act is to protect people's health from the damage caused by radiation and prevent and reduce environmental damage and other detrimental effects caused by radiation, said a government press release.
Finland is implementing the EU's Basic Safety Standards Directive by reforming the Radiation Act and certain related acts.
The new act will apply to the exposure situations of radiation practices, existing exposure situations and radiation hazards.
Under the new Act, the overall benefit of radiation practices and protection measures have to outweigh the detriment caused by them. Work-related exposure and the exposure of the public must remain at the lowest level practically possible in radiation practices and protection measures.
In addition, exposure to radiation for medical purposes must be limited to the level that is necessary to achieve the results of the examination or treatment or to carry out the procedure in question.
The law specifies the provisions on targeting radiation not only at patients, but also at asymptomatic persons.
It also specifies the regulation of exposure to natural radiation, such as exposure to radon in indoor air and exposure of workers to natural radiation, for example, in mines.
The new Act will increase operators' responsibilities and their risk-based monitoring activities.
For example, the operator must conduct a safety assessment based on the risks involved in their activities. The safety assessment involves assessing radiation exposures in the activities and identifying potential radiation safety incidents. The operator must in the safety assessment also present measures to ensure radiation safety, prevent the identified potential radiation safety incidents and prepare for the occurrence of such incidents.
In all activities requiring a safety licence, the operator has to consult a radiation safety expert when planning, implementing and monitoring safety protection measures concerning workers and members of the public, in accordance with the nature and extent of the operator's activities. In addition, the operator must appoint a radiation safety officer to monitor that staff at the place of work ensure radiation safety and follow regulations and guidelines.
Radiation safety experts and radiation safety officers have to possess the qualifications and radiation protection expertise required by the Radiation Act. Training in radiation protection may be included in a higher education degree or completed as separate continuing education and training.
The new Act also includes provisions on human exposure to radiation for non-medical imaging purposes, in which the main purpose of imaging is not to promote the person's health. These include X-ray examinations to determine the age of immigrants, for example.
Control of radon exposure becomes more effective – new reference values for homes and workplaces
Exposure to natural radiation, such as radon, will mainly be regulated in the same manner as exposure to radiation from other sources. This enables improved control of radon exposure.