NRC approves final rule on packing, transporting radioactive material

The Nuclear Regulatory Commission approved a final rule on Tuesday amending the requirements for packaging and transporting radioactive material.

In May 2013, the NRC published proposed changes to the rule for comment. The agency’s current transportation regulations are partly based on standards developed by the International Atomic Energy Agency. The IAEA occasionally amends its transportation standards to reflect learned knowledge and experience.

The NRC is updating its regulations to be compatible with the IAEA’s 2009 transportation standards and the U.S. Department of Transportation’s regulations.

The final rule establishes multiple changes that will improve consistency with IAEA standards. It also revises a fissile material exemption.

In addition, the NRC is changing the requirements for quality-assurance programs so that they deliver improved flexibility and extend the length of the NRC’s program approvals. Quality assurance includes the actions and procedures required to provide confidence that a system or component will perform acceptably.

Other changes include clarifying the responsibilities of general licensees, requirements for obtaining a general license, and the roles of applicants for a certificate of compliance, certificate holders and users of certified transport packages.

The approved final rule on packaging and transporting radioactive material will be published in the Federal Register.

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U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission

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