Radiation Safety Training: The Basis For Maintaining ALARA
K. H. Austin, R. H. Johnson, Jr.
Appreciation of ALARA considerations begins with the radiation safety training program at every facility. Whether it is in introductory or refresher training courses, all employees need to be instructed on the ALARA concept and to understand the theory behind this practice. When presented as a method of protecting the employee, proper ALARA training can lead to a cooperative team effort to minimize radiation exposure for everyone involved. Simply reciting the mantra of "Perform surveys, prevent spills, minimize time, utilize shielding and maximize distance" is not enough. In order to elicit the cooperation of the employees, it is imperative to demonstrate exactly what the facility is doing to minimize radiation exposures and to then encourage the employees to investigate and develop their own methods as well. Several beneficial training tools involve videotaped interviews or summaries of successful procedures used by other employees within the facility demonstrating their success in minimizing exposures. Seeing and learning what others have achieved stimulates creative ideas among the employees and assists in maintaining exposures ALARA.
This abstract was presented at the 34th Annual Midyear Meeting, "Radiation Safety and ALARA Considerations for the 21st Century", RSO Section Session, 2/4/2001 - 2/7/2001, held in Anaheim, CA.