Environmental Health & Safety

Emergency Procedures

I. Minor Spills: Involving no Radiation Hazard to Personnel: Survey Meter readings up to 2.5 mr/hr, or for weak beta emitters such as H-3 or C-14 up to 100 uCi.

  1. Notify all persons in the room at once.
  2. Permit only the minimum number of persons necessary to deal with the spill into the area.
  3. Confine the spill to the area using paper towels or absorbent pads.
  4. Liquid Spills: Don protective gloves, drop absorbent paper on to the spill.
  5. Dry Spills: Don protective gloves, dampen area of spill thoroughly making sure contamination is not spread.
  6. Using a soapy solution or professional decon spray and paper towels clean the spill from the outside perimeter of the spill inward.
  7. Avoid spreading the contamination beyond its original area.
  8. Check the area for contamination using a wipe test.
  9. Clean area until contamination levels are below acceptable limits.
  10. Dispose of contaminated items as radioactive waste.

II. Major Spills: Involving Radiation Hazards to Personnel:

  1. Notify all persons not involved in spill to vacate the room at once.
  2. If the spill is liquid, and the hands are protected, right the container.
  3. If the spill is on the skin, wash the affected area for at least 15 minutes.
  4. For a spill on clothing, remove outer garments and place in disposal bag, and keep contamination confined to the room in which the spill occurred.
  5. Switch off all fans.
  6. Vacate the room.
  7. Notify the Radiation Safety Office at x2243 as soon as possible.

III Personal Contamination:

  1. Wash the affected area with lukewarm water and a mild soap for at least 15 minutes.
  2. Do not use an abrasive cleaner or brush.
  3. Survey the affected area with a GM detector if the contamination is a high energy beta, gamma or x-ray emitter. Otherwise repeat the process three times to thoroughly clean the area.
  4. Report the contamination to the Radiation Safety Officer.

IV. Accidents Involving Radioactive Dusts, Mists, Fumes, Organic:

Vapors and Gases:

  1. Notify all other persons to vacate the room immediately.
  2. Hold breath and switch off all air circulating devices if time permits.
  3. Vacate the room, close windows, lock door and post notice at entrance.
  4. Notify the Radiation Safety Officer at x2243 at once.

V. Injuries to Personnel: Involving Radioactive Materials:

  1. For serious injuries call 4111 to obtain EMTs and an ambulance.
  2. Wash minor wounds immediately under running water for at least 15 minutes to remove contamination.
  3. Make the victim comfortable and administer basic first aid if qualified.
  4. Inform the EMTs that the individual is potentially contaminated with radioactive material.
  5. Report all radiation accidents to the Radiation Safety Officer as soon as possible (wounds, overexposure, ingestion and inhalation).

VI. Persons to be notified in the Event of an Emergency:

Radiation Safety Office: (718) 430-2243

Radiation Safety Officer: Peter Babin

VII. 24 Hours Emergency Number:
Dial x4111 and state the problem and your location. A Safety Officer will be paged.

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