Occupational Health and Safety Code
The Occupational Health and Safety Code provides specific technical health and safety rules and requirements for Alberta workplaces.
Part 20 Radiation Exposure
Prevention and protection
If a worker may be exposed to ionizing radiation at a work site, an employer must
(a) develop and implement safe work practices and procedures to be used when the worker works with or approaches the radiation source,
(b) if practicable, involve affected workers in the development and implementation of the safe work practices and procedures, and
(c) inform affected workers of the potential hazards, including reproductive hazards, of ionizing radiation and the radiation source and the precautions to be taken to protect the workers and other persons from those hazards.
An employer that uses radiation equipment or a radiation source that produces ionizing radiation must ensure that the structural shielding design for the radiation facility is adequate to ensure that the maximum effective dose limits and maximum equivalent dose limits specified in Tables 1 and 2 respectively of Schedule 12 are not exceeded.
An employer must ensure that the use, operation, handling, installation, calibration, testing, demonstration, service, repair, maintenance or disposal of
(a) x-ray equipment used in a veterinary practice complies with Radiation Protection in Veterinary Medicine: Recommended Safety Procedures for Installation and Use of Veterinary X-ray Equipment: Safety Code 28 (1991), published by Health Canada,
(b) baggage inspection x-ray equipment complies with Requirements for the Safe Use of Baggage X-ray Inspection Systems: Safety Code 29 (1993), published by Health Canada,
(c) x-ray equipment used in a dental practice complies with Radiation Protection in Dentistry: Recommended Safety Procedures for the Use of Dental X-ray Equipment: Safety Code 30 (Revised 2000), published by Health Canada,
(d) analytical x-ray equipment complies with
(i) Safety Requirements and Guidance for Analytical X-ray Equipment: Safety Code 32 (1994), published by Health Canada, and
(ii) Addendum to Safety Code 32: Portable, Hand-held, X-ray Tube Based Open-beam XRF Devices (2014), published by Health Canada,
(e) industrial x-ray equipment complies with Radiation Protection and Safety for Industrial X-ray Equipment: Safety Code 34 (2003), published by Health Canada, and
(f) x-ray equipment used for medical diagnosis complies with Safety Procedures for the Installation, Use and Control of X-ray Equipment in Large Medical Radiological Facilities: Safety Code 35 (2008), published by Health Canada.
In this section, “health care facility” means a facility where laser radiation is administered for diagnostic, therapeutic or research purposes by health professionals.
An employer must ensure that the use, operation, handling, installation, calibration, testing, demonstration, service, repair, maintenance or disposal of lasers
(a) in a health care facility complies with CAN/CSA Z386:20, Safe Use of Lasers in Health Care published by the Canadian Standards Association, and
(b) in a facility other than in a health care facility, complies with ANSI Standard Z136.1-2014, American National Standard for Safe Use of Lasers published by the American National Standards Institute.
Radiation exposure limits
An employer must ensure that a worker’s exposure to ionizing radiation is kept as low as reasonably practicable.
An employer must ensure that a worker’s exposure to ionizing radiation does not exceed any of the applicable maximum dose limits listed in Schedule 12, Tables 1 and 2.
A worker who uses radiation equipment, non-ionizing radiation equipment or a radiation source must ensure that exposure of any person to radiation is kept as low as reasonably practicable.
An employer must ensure that a worker’s exposure to non-ionizing radiation does not exceed any of the applicable maximum exposure limits listed in Schedule 12, Tables 3 and 4.
Monitoring worker exposure to ionizing radiation (dosimetry)
An employer must ensure that
(a) a worker who uses or may be exposed to radiation through the use of any ionizing radiation equipment described in subsection (2) is provided with and uses an appropriate device, provided by a dosimetry service provider licensed by the Canadian Nuclear Safety Commission, to monitor the worker’s personal exposure to ionizing radiation,
(b) the records obtained from the monitoring are kept for at least 5 years,
(c) affected workers are informed of and have access to their personal exposure records, and
(d) the dose of a worker as determined by monitoring pursuant to clause (a) is reported to the National Dose Registry.
The ionizing radiation equipment referred to in subsection (1)(a) is
(a) diagnostic or therapeutic x-ray equipment,
(b) particle accelerators,
(c) industrial x‑ray equipment,
(d) irradiation x-ray equipment, and
(e) any other ionizing radiation equipment for which the registration certificate requires monitoring of the personal exposure of radiation workers.
Additional protections for pregnant and young workers
If an employer is informed by a worker that the worker is pregnant, the employer must reassess the worker’s employment duties or training activities, as the case may be, and modify the duties or activities, where reasonable to do so, to ensure that the worker’s effective dose of ionizing radiation does not exceed the applicable maximum effective dose limits specified in Table 1 of Schedule 12.
An employer must not allow a worker under the age of 18 years to use or be involved in the use of ionizing designated radiation equipment or an ionizing radiation source except where
(a) the worker is a student undergoing a course of instruction involving the use of such equipment or source, and
(b) the use forms part of that course and is conducted under the direct supervision of a competent worker.
Designated radiation equipment — registration certificate required
An employer must ensure that no worker operates designated radiation equipment unless a registration certificate has been issued by an authorized radiation health registration agency or by a Director for that equipment.
A worker must not operate designated radiation equipment unless a registration certificate has been issued by an authorized radiation health registration agency or by a Director for that equipment.
Despite subsections (1) and (2),
(a) an authorized radiation protection inspection agency may operate designated radiation equipment as part of an equipment inspection, and
(b) a supplier of designated radiation equipment may operate designated radiation equipment as part of an equipment installation
without there being a registration certificate for that equipment.
An employer who holds a registration certificate must comply with all terms and conditions imposed by the authorized radiation health registration agency or by a Director.
An employer who holds a registration certificate must not modify the characteristics of the radiation emitted from the equipment that was the subject of the certificate or the protective properties of the facility in which the equipment is located.
An employer that holds a registration certificate must
(a) if practicable, ensure that a copy or a record of the certificate is posted near the equipment, or
(b) if it is not practicable to post the certificate, communicate to the workers who will use the equipment the terms and conditions contained in the certificate.