Ionizing radiation is widely used in South Africa for medical and industrial applications. It is produced by either electronic generators or radioactive materials:
Radiation Control regulates all activities involving electronic generators of ionizing radiation as well as radioactive sources used outside the nuclear fuel cycle. The aim is to protect patients, radiation workers, the public and the environment against over-exposure to ionizing radiation, without limiting its beneficial use.
Radiation Control receives its regulatory mandate through the Hazardous Substances Act (15 of 1973) (the Act), which classifies electronic generators of ionizing radiation as Group III hazardous substances, and radioactive sources as Group IV hazardous substances.
Device control is mandated by the Schedule for Listed Electronic Products Regulation R1302 of 1991.
Electronic generators of ionizing radiation include cyclotrons, particle generators and a wide range of X-ray devices used in medicine and industry. Medical uses range from linear accelerators, interventional radiography, computed tomography and mammography to
general radiography and dental X-rays. Industrial uses include industrial radiography, mining, security, veterinary medicine, and research, mortuary and forensic applications. Application forms, codes of practice, guidelines and other useful documents related to electronic generators of radiation (Group III hazardous substances) can be downloaded via these links:
Email any enquiries, correspondence and completed application forms to one of the following points of contact, depending on category and/or location. Ensure that any supporting documents requested on the forms are attached and clearly labelled.
Group III hazardous substances
Installation and use of new Group III equipment:
Installation and use of pre-owned Group III equipment:
Import and sale of new Group III equipment: Refer to Medical Devices.
Radionuclides (radioactive sources) are widely used for medical as well as research and industrial applications. The main medical applications are radiotherapy (radiation therapy) and nuclear medicine. Industrial uses include irradiators, industrial radiography, well logging, automated process control devices, soil moisture gauges and thickness gauges. In South Africa, all radionuclides with an activity above 4 kBq (4 000 becquerel) must be licensed.
Application forms, codes of practice, guidelines and other useful documents related to radionuclides (Group IV hazardous substances) can be downloaded via these links:
Email any enquiries, correspondence and completed application forms to firstname.lastname@example.org. Ensure that any supporting documents requested on the forms are attached and clearly labelled.
Emergencies involving radioactive sources or material
Any incidents/accidents/overexposures involving radionuclides must be reported by phone, email or fax within 24 hours (cf Regulations 16 and 25 of Regulations R247 of 1993) to one of the following at Radiation Control:
In the case of theft or loss of radioactive sources, or release of radioactive material in such a way that it could cause contamination in the public domain, contact SAPS Hawks (Directorate for Priority Crime Investigation): Col. Theron at 082 463 8706, as well as one of the Radiation Control numbers above.
For radioactive sources found at scrap metal possessing plants, contact the local SAPS Explosives Unit as well as Necsa Emergency Control Centre at 012 305 3333 (24 hours) and one of the Radiation Control numbers above.
For fire, natural disasters and conventional accidents involving radioactive sources or materials, contact your local Disaster Management Centre (DMC) as well as one of the Radiation Control numbers above.
For accidents/incidents during the transport of radioactive sources or materials, contact your local provincial traffic control office as well as one of the Radiation Control numbers above.
For radioactive sources confiscated at Ports of Entry, contact the local SAPS Explosives Unit as well as one of the Radiation Control numbers above.
Radiation Control has been regulating the import, manufacture, sale and use of all Group III electronic products included in the Schedule of Listed Electronic Products (Regulations R1302 of 1991). In terms of the Hazardous Substances Act 15 of 1973, a licence is required for the import of any product on the Schedule (with the exception of the products in sections 1(8), 5(7), 5(8) and 5(9)). The holder of an import licence must be permanently resident in South Africa and is required to comply with all relevant legal provisions and licence conditions. In order to be licensed for import, all such listed medical devices must comply with the European Union Medical Device Directive (or its successors). A licence is also required in terms of the same Act for the use of certain categories of listed electronic products, namely magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) systems and Class 3B and Class 4 lasers.
Application forms, codes of practice, guidelines and other useful documents related to listed electronic products (Group III hazardous substances) can be downloaded via these links:
Import and Manufacture
Guidelines and Codes of Practice
Email any enquiries, correspondence and completed application forms related to listed electro-medical devices (excluding X-rays) to one of the following points of contact