Overexposure of a worker

Print View Posted on: 01 June 2018

Event Date: 14 March 2018 Event Type: Radioisotope Processing/Handling Facility
Event Location: Finland, Veterinary clinic in Tampere INES Rating: 2 (Final)

An animal keeper was contaminated with I-131 in a veterinary clinic on March 14 2018. The veterinary clinic uses I-131 for feline hyperthyroidism treatments. On the treatment iodine is administrated to the cat as a single injection under the skin. On March 14 2018 five cats were treated with I-131 with administrated activities in the range of 44 -122 MBq. The animal keeper’s neck was contaminated from activity left on cat’s fur.

On March 16 2018 the animal keeper made measurements and noticed high dose rates near her neck. She notified radiation protection officer (RPO) about her findings. The RPO instructed animal keeper to take pill of stable iodine.

Next day the RPO made measurements of animal keepers neck and estimated that at least area of 4 cm2 was affected with activity of 360 kBq. After decontamination activity on the neck was measured to be about 100 kBq. On March 19 2018 the RPO measured her neck again and activity was found to be about 60 kBq. The RPO estimated that the animal keepers neck’s skin dose was 2 Sv with affected area of 4 cm2.

Finnish Radiation and Nuclear Safety Authority (STUK) was notified about the incident on March 28 2018. On April 4 2018 additional measurements were made in STUK. Thyroid’s I-131 activity was found to be 2,9 kBq, from there thyroid activity was estimated to have been 18 kBq on March 16 2018. The estimated equivalent dose to the thyroid was 27 mSv with estimated effective dose of 1,4 mSv.

INES Rating: 2 - Incident (Final) as per 01 June 2018
Release beyond authorized limits? No
Overexposure of a member of the public? No
Overexposure of a worker? Yes

Contamination spread within the facility? No
Damage to radiological barriers (incl. fuel damage) within the facility? No

Degradation of Defence In-Depth No

Person injured physically or casualty? No
Is there a continuing problem? No

Sampsa Kaijaluoto
Radiation and Nuclear Safety Authority (STUK)

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