Ionising radiation safety

The Ministry of Health’s Office of Radiation Safety (ORS) administers the Radiation Safety Act 2016 and the Radiation Safety Regulations 2016 on behalf of the New Zealand Government. This legislation controls all dealings with ionising radiation. For information about non-ionising radiation and radiofrequency such as 5G, please visit Non-ionising radiation page under Environmental Health.

News

14 July 2021

The transport guidance notes have been updated to reflect the new Codes of Practice for Transport ORS C6 and Security ORS C5. Some additional guidance on security has also been added for carriers.

Read more information for transporters of radioactive material

10 May 2021

The Radiation Safety Fees and Regulations Review 2021 is now underway. It is expected the process will be completed and the amended Regulations implemented around July 2022.

Read about the Radiation Safety Fees and Regulations Review 2021

02 November 2020

Frequently asked question (FAQs)

Upon request, a large number of FAQs have been published about our Codes of Practice.

Second round of consultation on the published Codes of Practice is closed

Following the publication of non-medical codes of practice on 31 July 2020, the Office of Radiation Safety (ORS) received feedback on the appropriateness of the ISO/IEC17025 standard required for external service providers and a suggestion to ask the wider group for their view on the best approach to ensure reliability and uniformity of monitoring or testing outcomes provided by external service providers. Therefore, ORS has prepared for a second round of consultation seeking your feedback on this specific matter.

Submissions closed at 12pm on 31 October 2020. View the consultation.

Database review

The Office of Radiation Safety is in the process of improving the accuracy of data that we hold in our database. The main components we're looking at are the current source licence status and radiation sources registered at each facility (ie, apparatuses such as medical CT scanners and instruments containing radioactive material such as nuclear density meters).


Key requirements of the Radiation Safety Act 2016

The legislation requires the following:

  • Managing entities of radiation sources must hold a Source licence authorising them to manage and control those sources.
  • Managing entities must register controlled radiation sources with the Office of Radiation Safety.
  • Individual users of radiation sources must hold a Use licence unless their use is otherwise authorised by the Act or regulations.
  • Consent is required for anyone who wishes to import or export radioactive material.

In this section

  • The Ministry of Health’s Office of Radiation Safety administers the Radiation Safety Act 2016 and the Radiation Safety Regulations 2016 on behalf of the New Zealand Government Read more
  • Users of ionising radiation must satisfy requirements set out in the Radiation Safety Act 2016, Radiation Safety Regulations 2016 and Codes of Practice. Read more
  • Check the requirements for the sale, purchase or disposal of radiation sources under the Radiation Safety Act 2016. Importers and exporters of radioactive material must obtain consent from the Office of Radiation Safety (or comply with the Regulations). Read more
  • Codes of practice issued by the Director for Radiation Safety under the Radiation Safety Act 2016 (section 86) provide operational requirements to comply with the fundamental requirements (section 9 to 12) in the Radiation Safety Act 2016. Read more
  • Radioactive material must be transported safely and securely. This section contains 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. In some cases, those service providers are involved in the use of ionising radiation and must therefore obtain a licence. In other cases, the services provided don't require providers to obtain a licence. In this section you'll learn the requirements for service providers and available services. 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
  • The Radiation Safety Advisory Council is an advisory group established under section 80 of the Radiation Safety Act 2016. Read more
  • The Ministry of Health’s Office of Radiation Safety (ORS) administers the Radiation Safety Act 2016 and the Radiation Safety Regulations 2016 (see below). ORS is conducting its three-yearly review of fees paid under the Regulations. Read more
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