Aurora News

Safe Handling of Radioactive Material Following Fire Damage

Aurora were proud to present a case study on the safe procedure following fire damage to a building housing radioactive sources at this year’s annual conference of the Society for Radiological Protection in Southport.

11 May 2018

Fire in Schools with Radioactive Teaching Sources

In a joint presentation with Ralph Whitcher from CLEAPSS (the school science safety organisation), Jon Taylor presented on the characterisation and disposal of damaged radioactive sources in the aftermath of a serious fire.

Jon described the preparation and radiological survey techniques used during the investigation. The talk also included the discussions with the Environment Agency on storage, processing and disposal of radioactive waste from the school to allow the site to be demolished, cleared and rebuilt. Jon described the spread of contamination and the damage caused to the sources by the intense heat and provided lessons learned for the storage of radioactive sources.

Two Top Tips

The source safe should be made of a non-combustible material that can maintain integrity in extreme temperatures.

Despite the convenience, source records should not be kept in the same location as the sources.