Radiation Protection Rule-making Activities

Current Rulemaking

National Standards Adopted by Reference for Sources of Radionuclide Emissions

On November 28, 2022 at 11:00 a.m. the Department of Health (department) will hold a virtual public hearing to propose amendments to WAC 246-247-035 National standards adopted by reference for sources of radionuclide emissions.

The proposed revision to WAC 246-247-035 amends the publication date of federal rules adopted by reference under 40 CFR Part 61 from 2021 to the most recently adopted 2022 version. The amendment makes no changes to any requirements previously adopted but is required for the department to receive full delegation of the Radionuclide Air Emissions Program from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).      

CR-102 Proposed Rulemaking Form (PDF) was filed on October 18, 2022.

Register for the online public hearing to listen to public testimony, provide public testimony, or make oral comments to the department about the proposed amendments. After registering, you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the webinar.

Additionally, written comments can be sent to radruleupdates@doh.wa.gov or through the department’s rules comment page.

All comments received, whether via email or online, will be given the same consideration. We encourage you to comment in a manner that is most convenient for you.

The department is accepting comments through November 28, 2022.

If you have any questions about the rule, contact John Martell at 509-346-3798 or Nina Helpling at 360-236-3065.

Radiation Standards for the Use of Whole-Body Scanners 

What is the purpose of this rulemaking? 

The purpose of this rulemaking is to establish radiation standards in response to Second Substitute Senate Bill (2SSB) 5695, Chapter 160, Laws of 2022, which requires Washington State Department of Corrections to establish a comprehensive body scanner program at the Washington corrections center for women and at a state correctional facility for men as part of an expanded pilot program to create drug-free facilities. 

The whole-body scanner must be able to detect contraband under clothing and in body cavities. It also must meet federal and state radiation safety standards. The Department of Health is the state radiation control agency with sole responsibility for administration of regulatory, licensing, and radiation control laws. 

In addition to developing a comprehensive body scanner program, Washington State Department of Corrections must develop a method to track and maintain records on the frequency of body scans on any individual to comply with any maximum allowable monthly and annual radiation dosage limits set by the Department of Health. This rulemaking will set dosage limits and establish safeguards for individuals scanned by whole-body scanners to protect the public’s health and safety from overexposure of radiation. The Department of Health will consider adopting these standards so they apply to all entities operating whole-body scanners in the state. 

What chapters may be amended? 

The Department of Health will consider amending existing rules and may adopt a new chapter to establish radiation safety standards for using body scanners that meet applicable federal and state radiation and safety standards. Amendments could be made to the following chapters: 

  • Chapter 246-220 WAC, Radiation protection - General Provisions  
  • Chapter 246-221 WAC, Radiation protection standards  
  • Chapter 246-222 WAC, Radiation protection - Worker rights  
  • Chapter 246-224 WAC, Radiation protection - Radiation machine assembly and registration 
  • Chapter 246-225 WAC, Radiation protection - X-rays in the healing arts, and  
  • Chapter 246-227 WAC, Radiation protection - Industrial X-ray. 

What’s been done so far? 

We filed a notice, CR-101 (PDF) with the Washington State Register to initiate rulemaking on August 23, 2022. 

We are assembling a rules advisory committee (RAC) to develop draft rules to establish radiation safety standards. The first RAC meeting will be held on November 1, 2022, from 2-3:30 p.m. To participate, contact Ashlie Laydon October 25, 2022.

How do I stay informed? 

Check back here for up-to-date information. Submit written comments to radruleupdates@doh.wa.gov.


Contact Ashlie Laydon or Richard Montemarano

Information about rulemaking activities at the Washington State Department of Corrections is on their website

Recently Adopted Rule

Nuclear Regulatory Commission – Regulation Action Tracking System (RATS) 2018.1 Update

On August 23, 2022, at 1:30PM, the Department of Health (department) held a virtual public hearing adopting amendments to the following three Washington Administrative Code (WAC) chapters:

  • Chapter 246-232 WAC – Radioactive material - licensing applicability
  • Chapter 246-235 WAC – Radioactive materials - specific licenses
  • Chapter 246-240 WAC – Radiation protection - medical use of radioactive material

This rule making amends three chapters of rules to adopt federally required rule changes without material change related to licensing radioactive materials. This rule making adopted the Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) rule changes that are identified by the following Regulation Amendments Tracking System (RATS) and corresponding federal registers (FR) – where applicable:

  • RATS 2018.1, 83 FR 33046-published 04/24/2002, chapters 246-232, 235, and 240 WAC:
    • Amends the reporting and notification requirements for a medical event for permanent implant brachytherapy;
    • Amends the training and experience requirement to obtain a written attestation for an individual who is certified by a specialty board whose certification process has been recognized by the NRC or an Agreement State as well as exempt certain board-certified individuals from certain training and experience requirements if certification was obtained by a specified date;
    • Amends the requirements for measuring molybdenum contamination;
    • Adds a new requirement for the reporting of failed technetium and rubidium generators; and
    • Allows licensees to name associate radiation safety officers on a medical license.

During the review of RATS ID# 2018.1, the department determined that during previous rulemakings, some drafting errors were made, and identified some rule language clarifications were needed as follows:

  • RATS ID# 2002.2, 67 FR 20348, WAC 246-240-075(2)(a):
    • Corrected an error made when adopting the language, regarding the completed number of hours of structured education and program experience required by a pharmacist to become a nuclear pharmacist from 200 hours to 700 hours.
  • RATS ID# 2005.2, 70 FR 16336, WAC 246-240-075(2)(a)(i):
    • Removed: "Didactic training in the following areas:"
    • Replaced with: "Two hundred hours of classroom and laboratory training in the following areas:"
  • Minor language clarifications were made to mirror equivalent 10 CFR language to the following:
    • RATS ID# 2005.2, 70 FR 16336, WAC 246-240-154(1)(a), 246-240-163 (1)(a), and 246-240-210(1)(b)
    • RATS ID# 2007.3, 72 FR 55864, WAC 246-235-010(9)
    • No RATS ID # (Pre 1991), 30 FR 8185, WAC 246-232-050(3) & (5), 246-235-010(4), and 246-235-020(2)
    • No RATS ID# (Pre 1991), 49 FR 9403, WAC 246-235-010(10)
    • No RATS ID# (Pre 1991), 52 FR 49371, WAC 246-232-004
    • No RATS ID# (Pre 1991), 53 FR 24044, WAC 246-235-010(8)
    • No RATS ID# (Pre 1991), 54 FR 14061, WAC 246-232-050(6)
    • RATS ID# 1998.1, 63 FR 1890, WAC 246-232-005
    • RATS ID# 2005.1, 70 FR 2001, WAC 246-232-050(14)
    • RATS ID# 2007.3, 72 FR 55864, WAC 246-232-050(7), 246-232-050(15) and 246-240-022(6)
    • RATS ID# 2011.1, 76 FR 35512, WAC 246-232-050(2)(b)(i) and (ii)

The CR-103P Rule-Making Order (PDF) was filed on September 20, 2022 and will be effective on October 21, 2022.

For more information, contact:

Raj Maharjan, 360-522-0613

Nina Helpling, 360-236-3065

Nuclear Regulatory Commission – Regulation Action Tracking System (RATS) Updates: 2018-2, 2018-3, 2019-1, 2019-2, and 2020-1

On April 12, 2022, the Department of Health (department) held a virtual public hearing to adopt amendments to the following five Washington Administrative Code (WAC) chapters:

  • Chapter 246-231 WAC – Packaging and transportation of radioactive material 
  • Chapter 246-236 WAC – Licenses and radiation safety requirements for irradiators
  • Chapter 246-237 WAC – Radiation protection – Physical protection of category 1 and category 2 quantities of radioactive material 
  • Chapter 246-243 WAC – Radiation protection – Industrial radiography
  • Chapter 246-244 WAC – Radiation protection – Wireline services

The department is required to remain compatible with NRC rules per the formal agreement between Washington State and the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC). Between 2018 and 2020 the NRC made miscellaneous corrections, organizational changes, conforming amendments, and minor revisions to the Code of Federal Registration, Title 10 - Energy, Chapter I. Nuclear Regulatory Commission as identified by NRC Regulation Amendments Tracking System (RATS) numbers as follows: 

  1. 2018-2 Miscellaneous Correction - Organizational Changes - 83 FR 58721: Amends rules to make miscellaneous corrections that are non-substantive changes, such as updating titles.
  2. 2018-3 Miscellaneous Corrections - 83 FR 30285: Amends Physical Protection of Category 1 and Category 2 Quantities of Radioactive Material and Packaging and Transportation of Radioactive Material rules to provide the department an oath or affirmation certificate(s) for reviewing officials seeking access authorization, to include in the security program, for the protection of information, a list of individuals that have been approved for unescorted access, and non-substantive changes such as updating titles.
  3. 2019-1 Miscellaneous Corrections - 84 FR 63565: Amends Physical Protection of Category 1 and Category 2 Quantities of Radioactive Material rules to make miscellaneous corrections that are non-substantive changes, such as updating titles, mailing address, e-mail address, and basic instructions for clarity.
  4. 2019-2 Organizational Changes and Conforming Amendments - 84 FR 65639 and 84 FR 66561: Amends Packaging and Transportation of Radioactive Material rules to make organizational changes instructing Washington licensees to send quality assurance plans to the department and not to the NRC directly and to make non-substantive conforming changes to update a division title.
  5. 2020-1 Individual Monitoring Devices - 85 FR 15347: Amends Licenses and Radiation Safety Requirements for Irradiators and Radiation Protection - Industrial Radiography, and Radiation Protection - Wireline Services.  These amendments were made in response to a 2016 petition for rulemaking that NRC received from the American Society for Nondestructive Testing and the Nondestructive Testing Management Association. The NRC is amending its regulations to authorize the use of modern individual monitoring devices in industrial radiographic, irradiator, and well logging operations. These amendments will align personnel dosimetry requirements in these areas with the requirements for all other NRC licensees.

The proposed rule also makes non-substantive formatting changes.

The CR-103 Rule Making Order (PDF) was filed on May 16, 2022 and goes into effect June 16, 2022.

View the Federal Register to WAC Crosswalk (Word).

For more information, contact:

Raj Maharjan, 360-522-0613

Nina Helpling, 360-236-3065

More Resources

Sign Up for Rule-making Email Lists

Statutory Authority and Rule

What is Rule Making?