[ RadSafe ] News article from Belgium: Worker Critical after highradiation dose

McMahan, Kimberly L. mcmahankl at ornl.gov
Thu Apr 6 11:50:16 CDT 2006

A few more details from France's IRSN (radiation protection and safety institute):

- The source is an 800,000 Ci Co-60 source.
- The dose estimate is actually bracketed at 3.8 to 4.5 Gy
- Chromosomal aberrations (dicentric, ring) were observed in a sample of the patient's blood, confirming the accident.


Kim McMAHAN    ORNL External Dosimetry

-----Original Message-----
From: McMahan, Kimberly L. 
Sent: Thursday, April 06, 2006 12:01 PM
To: radsafe at radlab.nl
Subject: RE: [ RadSafe ] News article from Belgium: Worker Critical after highradiation dose

The French news web site tf1.fr reported yesterday:

- A whole body dose of 4.2 Gy has been estimated. The source was Co-60. 
- This dose was determined by workplace measurements to map the dose rates using a phantom covered with dosimeters. 
- He is being treated at the military hospital Percy à Clamart (in a western suburb of Paris). 
- He felt the first symptom (malaise) about 3 weeks after the event. They have found the bone marrow is affected, and are still deciding the treatment strategy.


They don't report any details of the incident itself.

Kim McMAHAN    ORNL External Dosimetry

-----Original Message-----
From: radsafe-bounces at radlab.nl [mailto:radsafe-bounces at radlab.nl] On Behalf Of Jim Hardeman
Sent: Thursday, April 06, 2006 10:26 AM
To: radsafe at radlab.nl
Subject: [ RadSafe ] News article from Belgium: Worker Critical after highradiation dose

Colleagues *
Does anybody have any additional information about this incident?
Jim Hardeman
Jim_Hardeman at dnr.state.ga.us
URL = http://www.expatica.com/source/site_article.asp?subchannel_id=24&story_id=29065&name=Worker+critical+after+high+radiation+dose
Worker critical after high radiation dose
6 April 2006
BRUSSELS * A worker at a Wallonian company who was rushed to a Paris hospital after being exposed to a high dose of radiation is in an acute, life-threatening condition.
The Charleroi man, aged in his 50s, received within 20 seconds 400 times the amount of radiation permitted in one year.
The incident dates back to 11 March and investigations are now being carried out to determine why safety procedures failed.
The man spent 20 seconds in the radiation installation of the Wallonian firm Sterigenics, a Fleurus-based company near Charleroi that sterilises medical equipment.
Three weeks later, the worker reported to the company doctor because his hair started falling out, newspaper 'Het Nieuwsblad' reported on Thursday. 
When doctors confirmed a high level of radiation in his body, the man was rushed to a specialist Paris hospital. 
Company director Patrick Gourmelon said on Wednesday the man is in a "very serious" condition. The man is at risk of developing cancer and there are limited medical treatments available.
Workers usually carry a radiation measuring device and investigations must now determine why the worker or his supervisor did not immediately raise alarm.
"Did the dosage meter not work, was it not examined or did the worker not have it on" the chief of Belgian nuclear watchdog FANC-AFCN, Jean-Paul Samain, said.

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