Exemption, notification, registering and licensing of radioactive substances and radiation generators in the UK.
This guide brings together information from the various bodies across the UK who regulate the use of radioactive substances and radiation generators:
- Department of Health
- Health and Safety Executive (HSE)
- Health and Safety Executive for Northern Ireland (HSENI)
- Office for Nuclear Regulation (ONR)
- UK Environment Agencies
Environmental protection is devolved, so you will need to use the link for the appropriate environment agency: the Environment Agency (for England), Natural Resources Wales, Scottish Environment Protection Agency or Northern Ireland Environment Agency.
Department of Health
These forms are for doctors or dentists who want to apply for a certificate to use radioactive medicinal products (RMP) on people (in diagnosis, therapy or research)
Office for Nuclear Regulation (ONR)
The Office for Nuclear Regulation is responsible for regulation of nuclear safety and security across the UK. Their mission is to provide efficient and effective regulation of the nuclear industry, holding it to account on behalf of the public.
Health and Safety Executive (HSE)
Before you work with ionising radiation for the first time you will need to either
- notify certain work involving ionising radiation to HSE
- register certain work practices involving ionising radiation to HSE
- obtain consent from HSE to perform specific work practices
Regulations 5, 6, and 7 of Ionising Radiations Regulations 2017 place legal duties on radiation employers to obtain a written consent or registration, or to notify HSE before carrying out specified practices. Employers will notify or apply for registrations and consents using an online HSE application system. Further details can be found on the HSE website.
Regulation in England
The Environment Agency was established in 1996 to protect and improve the environment. They are responsible for regulating major industry and waste, including radioactive waste.
Information for licensees under the Nuclear Installations Act 1965.
Regulation in Northern Ireland
Use the link to apply for a Certificate of Registration to keep or use sealed sources, to keep or use mobile sources and to apply for a Certificate of Authorisation to accumulate or dispose of radioactive waste.
You can also use this link to download a HASS Record Form if you hold a High-Activity Sealed Source which requires a number of extra controls.
If you are going to start work with ionising radiation for the first time, you are required to notify HSENI at least 28 days before commencing work, unless your work falls into an exempt category.
Regulation in Scotland
Use the link to apply for, vary or modify an authorisation online or by post to work with radioactive substances. Before embarking on any application process, the Scottish Environment Protection Agency strongly advises that you contact them in the first instance.
Regulation in Wales
Use the link for guidance on radioactive substances regulation and applying for permits for Radioactive Substances sites.