Special Procedure 5
 
Requirements For Becoming Authorized To Use Radioactive Material (Top)
 
Before handling radioactive material, an individual must receive training in the safe handling of radioactive material and become listed as an approved user on a radioactive materials permit [1].  [Some small sealed sources, such as liquid scintillation counting standards and radioactive foils used in electron capture detectors on gas chromatographs, are exempt from training requirements.]
 
Training and Other Requirements for New Users
Training consists of a generic orientation course given by the Department of Environmental Health and Safety (EH&S), a quiz, two short movies and permit-specific training provided by the permit holder [2] who will supervise the individual.
 
The EH&S program is given at least once each month and consists of two 3-hour sessions.  All individuals who want to use radioactive material must attend the EH&S course and pass a quiz, regardless of their prior experience.  Individuals completing the course and quiz will receive a certificate describing the content of the program.  Register online through CU Learn by going to the EH&S training page.   The course sessions are named “Radiation Safety for Users of Radioactive Material - Day 1” and “Radiation Safety for Users of Radioactive Material - Day 2” and must be registered for separately.
 
The radiation safety quiz is offered on-line after the end of second course session on Blackboard (http://blackboard.cornell.edu/) and a passing score of 80% is required.  If you fail the quiz, you may retake the quiz on-line.  You may also request that a member of the radiation safety staff meet with you to discuss any questions you have.  You will need to retake and pass the quiz before you can become authorized to handle radioactive material.
 
Additional training, specific to the experimental procedures to be performed and the operation of the laboratory, must be provided by the permit holder.  The prospective new user and the permit holder must discuss the experiments to be performed, the conditions listed in the permit application, the permit itself and the laboratory’s internal procedures for activities, such as contamination monitoring, handling precautions and record keeping.  This orientation must include all items listed on the back of the “Radioactive Material New User Application” available on the EH&S web site.
 
Before actually using radioactive material, the individual must be added to the permit.  To do this, submit a “Radioactive Material New User Application” to EH&S in person or by mail. The form must be complete, including the permit holder signature and date of the orientation given by the permit holder.  If the form is not complete, it will be returned.  If you have a question about the form, contact EH&S.
 
Once an individual has completed the EH&S course, passed the quiz and submitted a completed user application, the permit will be amended.  After the user application is received by EH&S, a copy of the amendment will be sent to both the permit holder and the new user.  If the individual has not completed the EH&S course and quiz, the user application will be held on file until they have been completed.  An individual may be on more than one permit at the same time, but a completed user application must be on file at EH&S for each permit.
 
REMEMBER, TO USE RADIOACTIVE MATERIAL YOU MUST FIRST:
  1. ATTEND BOTH SESSIONS OF THE EH&S RADIATION SAFETY COURSE
  2. TAKE AND PASS THE RADIATION SAFETY QUIZ
  3. RECEIVE THE PERMIT HOLDER ORIENTATION
  4. SUBMIT A COMPLETED “Radioactive Material User Application” FORM TO EH&S
  5. RECEIVE A COPY OF THE PERMIT LISTING YOU AS AN AUTHORIZED USER
Training Expiration and Retraining Requirements
To be added to a permit as a user, training is considered to be current if:
  • For new users, you have successfully completed the two day class and quiz
  • For new users, the date of the first day of training is within 3 years of the request to be added to a permit
  • For current users, in-lab annual retraining has been completed and documented
  • For past users not currently on a permit, the date of your last in-lab retraining is within 3 years of the request to be added to another permit.
If more than 3 years but less than 5 years has elapsed since the date of the first day of training for new users, or since the date of the last retraining for current and past users, a user must take and pass the quiz to demonstrate adequate radiation safety knowledge. Attendance at the two day class is optional for the user but may be required by the RSO, in addition to taking the quiz.
 
If more than 5 years has elapsed since the date of the first day of training for new users, or since the date of the last retraining for current and past users, attendance at the two day class and passing the quiz is required.
[1]   
Written approval from the University Radiation Safety Committee that describes who, what, where and how radioisotopes can be used in research and teaching. 
[2]    
The permit holder is the individual, usually a principle investigator, who is authorized to supervise the use of radioactive materials. 
 
 
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