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Radiation Safety Committee Charter

Purpose

The Berkeley Lab Radiation Safety Committee (RSC) is appointed by, and reports to, the Laboratory Director and is responsible for advising LBNL Management on all matters related to occupational and environmental radiation safety. The Radiation Safety Committee reviews and recommends approval of radiation safety policies and guides the Environment, Health and Safety Division and radiation user divisions in carrying out these programs. The scope of its actions will generally be in issues of broad institutional concern and impact, or areas of potential high consequence either in terms of safety or institutional needs.

The RSC shall provide a forum to ensure that important radiation safety issues receive appropriate, balanced, and expert review before being acted upon.

Membership

The RSC shall be composed of not more than twelve nor less than five members exclusive of ex-officio members. Members shall be appointed by the Laboratory Director for three year renewable terms on the basis of knowledge of the principles and practices of the control of radiation hazards and on experience and management in the use of radioisotopes and/or radiation producing machines. The membership shall reflect the diversity of scientific disciplines using radiation at LBNL. The LBNL Radiological Control Manager (RCM) shall serve as a full member and acts as the liaison with other Berkeley Lab programs. In addition, the LBNL Safety Review Committee will provide at least one full or ex-officio member who will provide liaison to that body and ensure integration with larger institutional safety issues.

Responsibilities

I. Meetings

The RSC shall meet at least once each calendar quarter. Additional meetings may be called by the RSC Chair to review and approve higher hazard radiation uses, review and act on radiation incidents, and/or consider matters referred by the RCM or members of the RSC.

A quorum, consisting of a simple majority of the voting membership, shall be present at all meetings and will include the RCM or designee. Minutes of the meetings shall be kept by the RCM or designee. Copies of the minutes shall be sent to members of the RSC and applicable Berkeley Lab staff. The Radiation Protection Program shall maintain a file of the RSC meeting minutes.

II. Policy Review

The RSC shall review Radiation Protection Program policies and recommend approval or modification of them to Laboratory management. The scope of policy review shall include the following program areas:

  1. Authorizations or permits to acquire and use radioisotopes (sealed and unsealed), radiation-producing machines and to work in radiation controlled areas.
  2. Storage, transportation, use and disposal of radioactive materials.
  3. Radioactive material waste handling and processing.
  4. Environmental release of radioactive effluents and direct environmental radiation exposure.
  5. Internal and external dosimetry program.
  6. Emergency response to accidents involving radioactive material or radiation- producing machines, and investigation of such events.
  7. ALARA program and goals.
  8. Facility radiation protection design review
  9. Radiation safety training

III. Authorization and Permit Review

Radiation Work Authorizations (RWAs), Radiation Work Permits (RWPs), and Sealed Source Authorizations (SSAs) shall be reviewed and approved by the RSC as listed below. Amendments that increase classification of a RWA or authorize new Class III work will also receive RSC review. Questions and disagreements concerning review and approval of an RWA/RWP/SSA shall be resolved by the RSC. RSC members whose own authorizations are under review will abstain from voting.
The RSC, in conjunction with the RCM may at any time prohibit any controlled radiation activities which it deems to be unduly hazardous, or contrary to regulations or good practice. In such cases, the RSC shall inform the appropriate Division Directors.

Approval of radiation use:

Class I - reviewed and approved by the Radiological Control Manager for the RSC.
Class II - reviewed and approved by the Radiological Control Manager and the RSC
Chair or designated Committee member.
Class III - reviewed and approved by the Radiological Control Manager and a majority of
the RSC members. The RSC Chair or designated Committee member will sign for the
Committee.

IV. Radiation Safety Performance Review

The RSC provides oversight to the radiation safety compliance inspections carried out by the Radiation Protection Program. The RCM or other appropriate EH&S staff will report periodically to the RSC on radiation safety performance by LBNL users. Also, on a case by case basis the RCM may bring individual compliance issues before the RSC. If performance of radiation users or EH&S is found to be unsatisfactory, the RSC may recommend appropriate remedies to the Laboratory Director, EH&S, or appropriate Division Director.

The RSC shall also provide oversight to the Radiation Protection Program (RPP). Periodically the RCM will provide reports to the committee on the EH&S Division’s performance in discharging its policy and procedural radiation safety responsibilities. The RSC may independently evaluate RPP implementation procedures, obtain feedback from radiation users regarding RPP functions, and make recommendations to the Laboratory Director, EH&S Director, or the RCM.

The RSC shall keep good records of all its activities including but not limited to regular or special meetings, investigation reports, and programmatic reviews. Throughout the year meeting minutes and other reports shall be transmitted to the Laboratory Director in a timely fashion. The Committee shall meet with the Laboratory Director at least annually to discuss issues and review the Committee’ s activities. An annual activities report shall be prepared for the Director. The highlights of this activities report may be presented at a Division Director's meeting.

V. Facility Design Review

As deemed necessary by the RCM, the RSC shall review and recommend for approval radiological design reviews conducted by members of the Radiation Protection Program.

VI. ALARA

The RSC shall review and approve institutional ALARA goals for occupational and public exposure to radiation. Periodically, the RCM or appropriate EH&S staff shall provide reports documenting performance, trends, and explanations for actual dose relative to these targets. At its discretion, or at the request of the RCM the RSC may perform independent ALARA reviews of selected user activities. In such cases EH&S staff shall provide appropriate technical support.

VII. Investigations

The RSC may investigate radiological occurrences or other conditions affecting regulatory compliance or radiation protection. These investigations may be requested by the RCM, EHS Division Director or the Laboratory Director. The RSC Chair will determine the Committee’s involvement in the investigation. The extent of the RSC’s involvement will be determined by the nature of the situation or occurrence and its impact on the Radiation Protection Program. Investigations will be coordinated with the Environmental Counsel and the Price Anderson Amendments Act Coordinator as appropriate. Affected divisions may form a committee to investigate an incident pursuant to Section 5.1.14 of Pub. 3000. At least one member of the RSC will be on the committee. A copy of the Committee Report will be sent to the RSC.