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University of California Santa Barbara Radiation Safety Committee Section 8 Radioactive Waste Disposal 8 01 Waste Containers and Disposal General Radioactive waste containers must be of the type supplied or approved by the Radiation Safety Office The minimum criteria are that waste should have at least two separate layers of unbreakable containment and be clearly marked as to its radioactive contents Examples would be a plastic carboy and spill drip tray for liquid waste a heavy duty plastic bag and cardboard box for solid waste etc Pickup and disposal of radioactive waste is requested by submitting to the Radiation Safety Office through the campus mail or through our website a Radioactive Waste Pickup Request form Appendix B 10 This form must be completed and submitted prior to pickup requests by telephone are unacceptable All radioactive waste must be carefully prepared in compliance with campus procedures Waste which fails to meet these minimum requirements may be refused pickup or returned to generating laboratories for additional preparation All radioactive waste must be disposed of through the Radiation Safety Office The transfer of any radioactive solids to regular refuse containers or radioactive liquids to laboratory sink drains is strictly prohibited This includes the storage for decay of short lived radionuclides e g P 32 by lab personnel and subsequent disposal as non radioactive waste within the research lab The following waste categories solid liquid liquid scintillation vials animal are separate and mutually exclusive 8 02 Solid Waste Preparation Definition Solid waste consists of dry radioactively contaminated materials typically paper plastics glassware and gloves Prohibited Materials Although small amounts of damp materials may be unavoidably present solid waste must not contain any free standing liquids Free standing liquid is that amount which can readily run and thus could easily be emptied from centrifuge tubes pipettes etc it is not droplets retained in containers by surface tension or capillary action Rev 7 27 2007 24 University of California Santa Barbara Radiation Safety Committee Massive non compactable items motors centrifuges and heads etc shall not be placed in solid waste receptacles Contact Radiation Safety for specific disposal procedures Solid waste must not contain hazardous chemicals and materials EPA RCRA such as lead pigs stock vials with remaining liquids powders or sealed radioactive sources Contact Radiation Safety for specific disposal procedures Controlled Materials Small quantities of non integral radioactive solids e g dusts powders fibers must be sealed within plastic bags or plastic containers such as centrifuge tubes before being placed into solid waste receptacles Contact Radiation Safety when disposal of larger quantities of such materials is necessary Sharp objects such as razor blades needles and broken glass must be placed within puncture resistant containers before being placed into waste receptacles Biohazardous materials must be sterilized before being placed into waste receptacles Under no circumstances are animals associated excreta or tissue samples to be placed into solid waste receptacles Radionuclide Segregation All solid waste must be segregated into three classes of receptacles based upon the halflives of contaminating radionuclides T1 2 14 days Radionuclides with half lives of 14 days and less e g P 32 In111 etc All radioactive markings and symbols must be removed or obliterated T1 2 90 days Radionuclides with half lives of 90 days and less e g S 35 I125 Cr 51 P 33 etc whether alone or combined with shorter lived isotopes from multiple label experiments All radioactive markings and symbols must be removed or obliterated All Isotopes 8 03 Radionuclides with half lives greater than 90 days e g H 3 C 14 etc whether alone or combined with shorterlived isotopes from multiple label experiments Liquid Waste Preparation Definition Liquid waste may consist of a variety of chemical constituents provided that the waste is homogeneous is pourable and is segregated by radioactive half life Rev 7 27 2007 25 University of California Santa Barbara Radiation Safety Committee Prohibited Materials Although small amounts of non soluble materials may be unavoidably present liquid waste should generally not contain solid materials especially plastic laboratory equipment such as pipette tips microcentrifuge tubes etc Indicate on the waste pickup form if the waste does contain solids and or precipitates Controlled Materials Biohazardous liquids must be sterilized before being placed into waste containers Under no circumstances are animal excreta or homogenized tissue samples to be placed into liquid waste containers these should be disposed of according to animal disposal policies Small volumes of high concentration radioactive liquids e g stock solutions should not be placed into liquid waste containers Instead such liquids should be capped and stored separately for receipt and disposal by the Radiation Safety Office Voluntary Chemical Physical Segregation The generation of radioactive organic and or hazardous materials EPA RCRA solutions is strongly discouraged When generation of such organic hazardous waste solutions is unavoidable it is preferable to segregate them from non hazardous aqueous solutions Note Although polymerized acrylamide may be present liquid waste containing such material must meet the basics standards of being homogeneous and pourable solutions which are not homogenous throughout the volume of the container may be returned to generators for separation In all cases radioactive waste must be fully and accurately described on waste pickup forms Radionuclide Segregation All liquid waste must be segregated based upon the half lives of dissolved radionuclides T1 2 14 days Radionuclides with half lives of 14 days and less e g P32 In 111 etc T1 2 90 days Radionuclides with half lives of 90 days and less e g S 35 I125 Cr 51 P 33 etc whether alone or combined with shorter lived isotopes from multiple label experiments Rev 7 27 2007 26 University of California Santa Barbara All Isotopes 8 04 Radiation Safety Committee Radionuclides with half lives greater than 90 days e g H 3 C14 etc whether alone or combined with shorter lived isotopes from multiple label experiments Scintillation Waste Preparation Definition Scintillation waste consists of liquid scintillation cocktails including dissolved or suspended samples


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