Excellence in Radiological Control
135 Workplace Awareness
DOE encourages management initiatives to facilitate the expression of concerns on the part of the work force, to
address such concerns, and to solve them to ensure the proper respect for and understanding of radiation.
Management should establish and support a radiological awareness reporting system. To enhance work force
awareness, the program should encourage continuous evaluation and improvements, track resolution of concerns,
provide feedback to employees, and post results and trends. This system may be integrated with similar reporting
systems for non-radiological concerns.
136 Internal Exposures
Control and prevention of internal exposure, particularly from long-lived radionuclides in the workplace, present special
challenges to a radiological control program and warrant particular attention. Factors requiring management attention
include the following:
Workers may be exposed to unanticipated levels of elevated airborne radioactivity. The time required to collect
representative airborne radioactivity samples and to determine the airborne concentration of radionuclides may
contribute to worker intakes of radioactivity.
If controls fail, internal depositions of radionuclides can occur in a short period of time.
The continued exposure of workers to airborne radioactivity over extended periods of time can create worker
Doses from some radionuclides taken into the body are difficult to measure. Although some radionuclides, such as
cesium and tritium, can be readily measured at levels that produce only a few millirem, some long-lived
radionuclides, such as plutonium, may require years for accurate measurements of hundreds of millirem.
Medical intervention, such as the administration of blocking and chelating agents, to mitigate internal deposition
may add risks by introducing additional chemicals into the body.
Sampling of body excretions and whole body or organ counting techniques may encourage worker perceptions of
internal exposure significance.
Administration of internal dose assessment is costly in dollars and worker time. Control and analysis of samples
are also more complicated and time consuming than the elements of external dosimetry.
Use of respiratory protection devices imposes additional physical stresses upon participating workers.
The hierarchy of controls required to control internal exposures is provided in Article 316.