Radiation safety

The Ministry of Health’s Office of Radiation Safety administers the Radiation Protection Act 1965 and the Radiation Protection Regulations 1982 on behalf of the New Zealand Government. This legislation controls the use of ionising radiation.

Key requirements

The legislation requires the following:

  • users of radioactive materials or irradiating apparatus must hold a licence and are normally also required to comply with a code of safe practice. View the Codes of safe practice.
  • importers and exporters of radioactive material must obtain a consent
  • vendors and purchasers of irradiating apparatus must notify all transactions
  • transporters of radioactive material must comply with transport regulations.

Licensee search

Search the Ministry’s register of current radiation license holders.

In this section

  • Users of ionising radiation must either hold a licence under the Radiation Protection Act, or act under the supervision or instructions of a licence-holder. This section has information for radiation users, including licensing requirements, codes of safe practice, the process for notifying radiation incidents and more. Read more
  • People who own radiation sources (irradiating apparatus or radioactive material) must ensure the source is cared for safely. This section has information on keeping radiation sources secure, assigning a ‘safe care’ licensee, and storing and disposing of radiation sources. Read more
  • Importers and exporters of radioactive material must obtain consent from the Office of Radiation Safety (or act in compliance with the Regulations). Vendors and purchasers of irradiating apparatus must notify all their transactions to the Office of Radiation Safety. Read more
  • Information on the rules for transporting radioactive material, guidance for drivers and handlers, and information on transporting uranium ore concentrate. Read more
  • Many service providers provide important support services to the radiation sector. This section has information for service providers, including when they need a user licence, and information on calibrating radiation measuring equipment and personal dosimetry services. Read more
  • The Ministry provides advice to Government and the public on the health effects of non-ionising radiation. Read more
  • The Office of Radiation Safety is the regulatory body which administers radiation safety legislation. This section describes the functions of the office and links to other organisations promoting radiation safety. Read more
  • The Ministry of Health’s environmental radioactivity monitoring programme analyses trends in environmental radioactivity in the region and warns of any influx in radioactivity. The programme confirms recent trends of decreasing radioactivity levels in the New Zealand environment, despite recent nuclear incidents that have occurred in the northern hemisphere. Read more
  • The Environmental radioactivity annual reports have reported on environmental radioactivity levels in the New Zealand and South Pacific region since 1960.   Read more
Back to top