Transport of radioactive material in India is governed by
Atomic Energy Regulatory Board (AERB) safety code AERB/SC/TR-1
which is based on International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA)
regulations for the safe transport of radioactive material. The
basic requirement for the transport of radioactive material is
that the package containing the material shall be designed and
prepared in such a way that during the whole process of
transport, the radioactive material remains contained to
prevent contamination and remains shielded to avoid
unacceptable radiation exposure to cargo handlers and public.
As the activity and nature of radioactive material to be
transported varies over a wide range i.e. from few kBq (few
µCi) to few PBq (thousands of Ci), a graded approach is used in
selection of the packaging. Radioactive material can be in
special form i.e. indispersible or sealed encapsulated source
or other than special form. Therefore, the regulations provide
for different type of packages to be used depending upon the
nature, physical form and activity of the radioactive material.
The Types of packages used for the transport of radioactive
materials are Excepted package, Industrial package, Type A
package, Type B(U) and Type B(M) package.
The regulations provide for limits on the activity which can be
transported in the above package in terms of A1 and A2 . A1 is
the maximum activity of radioactive material which can be
transported in Type A package when the material is in special
form and A2 is the maximum activity of radioactive material
which can be transported in Type A package when the material is
not in special form. A1 and A2 values of some common
radioisotopes are given in the table "A1
and A2 values of some common radioisotopes"
Excepted packages are used for the transport of very
small (limited) quantities of radioactive materials such as RIA
kits (permitted activity special form: 10-3 A1 and for other
than special form: 10-3 A2 for solids and 10-4 for liquids).
Industrial packages are used for the transport
of low specific activity material such as natural thorium or
uranium ores and ore concentrates or other radioactive material
which is essentially uniformly distributed in small quantities
in large mass of non-radioactive medium.
A packages are used for the transport of moderate activity of
radioactive material such as nucleonic gauge sources, some
brachytherapy sources used in hospitals, nuclear medicine
sources used for diagnostic and therapeutic purposes (Permitted
activity A1 in special form and A2 in other than special form).
Type B(U)/B(M) Packages are used for
the transport of large activity of radioactive material as per
the approval of the competent authority i.e. AERB such as
teletherapy sources, gamma irradiators sources, industrial
radiography sources and some brachytherapy sources.
Type A package need to be registered with AERB. The
prescribed application form, for this purpose, is given in "Application
form for registration of Type A package". This application
form needs to be submitted to AERB along with the reports on
the tests conducted on the package as per the regulations.
Type B(U)/B(M) package need to be approved by
AERB. The prescribed application form, for this purpose is
given in "Application
form for approval of Type B package". This application form
needs to be submitted along with the reports on the tests
conducted on the package as per the regulations.
The prime responsibility for ensuring compliance with the
regulations lies with the consignor. The consignor needs to
ensure that the appropriate packaging is selected for the
transport of radioactive material and the package is prepared,
marked and labelled as per the regulations. Guidelines for the
preparation of the package are given in "Procedures for
preparation of packages".
Once the package
is prepared as per the prescribed procedures, it can be
transported by any mode of transport i.e. by road, rail, sea or
air. Transport documents should include (1) declaration by the
consignor, (2) instructions to the carrier, (3) a Transport
Emergency Card (TREMCARD) and Instructions in writing to the
carrier for emergency measures. Format of each is given in "Consignor's
to the carrier", "TREMCARD
for in-dispersible radioactive materials" and "TREMCARD
for dispersible radioactive materials", and "Instructions
in writing for emergency measures". Transport Emergency Card
(TREMCARD) includes the information on the primary steps to be
taken in case of emergency and the emergency contact numbers.
In case of any incident reported on the way, it shall be
promptly reported by the consignor to AERB.
For ensuring compliance with all the requirements of the
regulations, the consignor may verify with the checklist
provided in the format "Check
list for packaging and transport"
obtaining permission for export or transport of disused sources
to the supplier or Waste Management agency, the information
should be provided in the prescribed format "Permission
for transport of disused sources" or "Permission
for export of disused sources".
obtaining port clearance for consignments transported by sea,
application should be made in the prescribed format "Port
of Transport related forms
and A2 values of some common radioisotopes
form for registration of Type A package
Form for Design Approval of a Type B(U)/(M) Package
of Safety Analysis Report (SAR) of a Type B(U)/(M) Package
for preparation of packages
- Consignor's declaration
to the carrier
TREMCARD for dispersible radioactive materials
for in-dispersible radioactive materials
in writing for emergency measures
number and Proper Shipping names
list for packaging and transport
for transport of disused sources
Permission for export of disused sources
For any information on above forms
please contact Head,