[ RadSafe ] Radiation for health

Doug Aitken jdaitken at sugar-land.oilfield.slb.com
Thu Jun 19 12:50:54 CDT 2008

I think it is important to realize that, no matter whether LNT is or is not
valid (and whether or not hermetic effect of low-level doses exists), there
is a need to set dose limits on occupational exposure, just as there is for
any toxin or hazardous substance in the workplace. Which I personally feel
is a reasonable justification for ALARA/ALARP. The important point being the
Achievable/Practicable part! 

Then if an individual decides that he/she does not get enough radiation, let
them sleep with a packet of fertilizer or welding rods, or move to
Guarapari, Brazil, to increase their dose.....

Much of my personal/professional efforts are to ensure the occupational dose
received by personnel when handling radioactive sources are kept well within
the regulatory (and company-mandated - which are lower than the US regs!)
dose limits. And through a combination of engineered systems,
policies/procedures and competent personnel, this is easy to achieve. And,
of course, occupational doses are monitored, records kept and any anomalous
doses investigated!

And, of course, every person in industry with similar responsibilities is
doing exactly the same thing!

Failure to do so would not only expose companies to not only regulatory
sanctions but the potential for litigation from any employee that, in the
future, might develop a cancer (and many will) and be persuaded that it
might be due to negligence on the part of the employer... (with obvious
consequences of lawsuits....)

So, while we can argue all day on whether or not LNT is valid, reality
requires us to apply ALARA/ALARP........

(this of course is a totally different thing from the ridiculous regulations
imposed on the construction and running of nuclear power stations by
legislators running scared from a vocal band of anti-nucs - but that is a
different topic!)

Doug Aitken     Cell phone: 713-562-8585
QHSE Advisor
D&M Operations Support           
Schlumberger Technology Corporation
300 Schlumberger Drive
Sugar Land TX 77030

Home office: 713-797-0919  Home Fax: 713-797-1757

-----Original Message-----
From: radsafe-bounces at radlab.nl [mailto:radsafe-bounces at radlab.nl] On Behalf
Of Bjorn Cedervall
Sent: Thursday, June 19, 2008 11:43 AM
To: radsafe at radlab.nl
Subject: RE: [ RadSafe ] Radiation for health

> Does anyone actually believe in LNT? It certainly makes it easy to produce
> an effect regulatory frame work, but I do not think it is true.
LNT is an administrative tool - the actual shape in the lower dose region
(say less
than 10 mGy as an acute dose) will probably never be known. We can only do
"educated guesses" based on molecular and other phenomena + clinical
we study in various ways - their potential relevance depending on context
Bearing this in mind, it shouldn't be about believing. I am personally
convinced that
a single ionization may be the first step in a series of events that
ultimately may
result in an aggressive tumor. This does not make me think that the detailed
dose-response has any particular shape - and furthermore it does not make me
particularly worried about radiation. High blood pressure for instance
be of much larger concern for most people than getting some extra and
dose of ionizing radiation exposure (I did my first radiation experiments
Co-60 and an X-ray tube) in high school more than 40 years ago.
My personal reflections only,
Bjorn Cedervall
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