Class 7 Hazards

Class 7 Hazards

covers  radioactive materials that emit radiation.

Radioactive Material

A substance is a radioactive material if it produces energy by independently releasing subatomic particles. Radioactive waste is hazardous because it emits radioactive particles, which if not properly disposed can be a risk to human health and the environment.

The risk from exposure to a particular radionuclide depends on:

  • The energy of the radiation it emits.
  • The type of radiation (alpha, beta, gamma, x-rays).
  • Its activity (how often it emits radiation).
  • Whether exposure is external or internal:
  1. External exposure is when the radioactive source is outside of your body. X-rays and gamma rays can pass through your body. 
  2. Internal exposure is when radioactive material gets inside the body by eating, drinking, breathing. 

Exposure to large amounts of radioactivity can cause nausea, vomiting, hair loss, diarrhea, hemorrhage, destruction of the intestinal lining, central nervous system damage, and death. It also causes DNA damage and raises the risk of cancer

Radioactive material label as per radiation level at any point of internal surface:  WHITE-I, YELLOW-II and YELLOW-III.

  • I – Extremely low radiation levels: 0.5 millirems (0.0050 mSv) per hour.
  • II – Low radiation levels: >0.5–50 millirems (0.0050–0.5000 mSv) per hour, on surface. 1.0 millirem (0.010 mSv) maximum at 3.3 feet (1 m).
  • III – Higher radiation levels: >50–200 millirems (0.50–2.00 mSv), on surface. 10 millirems (0.10 mSv) maximum at 3.3 feet (1 m).

E.g.: Naturally occurring radioactive elements include uranium and radon and Manmade radioactive elements include plutonium and einsteinium.