Overexposure to Radiographer’s Assistant

A radiographer assistant exceeded the 50 mSv (5 rem) exposure limit for 2012. This individual consistently had higher exposures than other employees and had failed to turn in his badge at the end of April 2012, instead continuing to wear it through May. At the end of October, the assistant again failed to turn in his badge and wore it through November, but turned in his December badge. After his badge worn during October and November 2012 was finally turned in and processed, it was identified that his total dose for the year 2012 was 59 mSv (5.9 rem). When interviewed, the certified radiographer the assistant worked with stated that on two or three occasions, they had retracted the source but when they approached the camera their rate alarms went off. They then cranked the source out and retracted it again, which corrected the problem. The radiographer stated that after each incident, he had checked his and his assistant’s direct-reading dosimeters and found they indicated a dose of 0.1 mSv (10 mrem) or less, therefore he decided not to report them to the RSO. He also stated that the need to keep up with the work load played a role in his decision not to report these incidents. The State asked the radiation safety officer to perform another investigation into this incident, specifically focusing on whether this was an isolated incident or if this was representative of the overall culture at the facility. The State informed the radiation safety officer that enforcement action would be deferred pending the results of his investigation. NRC EN48702.

Location: Tulsa, Oklahoma / Advanced Inspection Technologies
Event date: Tue, 15-01-2013
Nuclear event report
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