Ionising Radiation Regulations

The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) has consulted on changes to the Ionising Radiation Regulations 1999 (IRR1999), the majority of which have been brought in by the implementation of the EU Basic Safety Standards Directive (BSSD).

These changes can be found in consultative document CD282: Consultation on the implementation of Directive 2013/59/EURATOM laying down basic safety standards for protection against the dangers arising from exposure to ionising radiation – Occupational health and safety
Briefly, the main changes are as follows:
  • Dose limit for exposure to the lens of the eye and implementation of the Directive: The Directive introduces a reduction of the equivalent dose from 150 mSv to 20 mSv in a year. Currently, exposure to ionising radiation is calculated and assessed on a calendar year basis, which requires individual dose limits to be recalculated for the remainder of the year. HSE proposes to transpose the BSSD early, on 1 January 2018, to avoid confusion and any additional cost burden to businesses.
  • Graded approach: Introduction of a new three-tiered risk-based system of regulatory control. The Directive refers to these levels as notification, registration and licensing – the higher the radiation protection risk associated with the work, the greater the requirements. HSE is required to have in place a positive system of authorisation whereby permission is granted to duty holders for higher risk activities through registration and licensing.

The other new key requirements that stakeholders will have to consider are also explained in the consultative document. Consultation began on 7 February 2017 and ended on 2 April 2017.

Further information on the changes to the IRR1999 documents can be found at:

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