Liquid Waste Handling Rules

1.        Liquid radioactive waste (including liquid scintillation fluid) shall be contained in plastic or glass, sealable jugs.  Call the Radiation Safety Office (x3372) if special consideration must be given to another type of container due to chemical incompatibility with plastic or glass approved containers.  NOTE: Liquid radioactive waste should be doubly protected.  Plastic storage bins are therefore available from either the Radiation Safety Office or the Environmental Health and Safety Office.
2.        Each radioactive liquid waste container shall be identified with the magenta and yellow radiation symbol and the words: “RADIOACTIVE WASTE.”  
3.        Radioactive waste is required to be segregated by isotope (NOTE: The laboratory may combine 3H and 14C into a single container or may combine short half-life (typically T1/2 £ 120d) materials together.  In all cases, materials added to a waste container shall be chemically non-reactive with both the container and its contents).
4.        While in use, each liquid waste container shall be clearly labeled with the information required in Section A: General Waste Handling, Part 7.  Verify this information is not obscured from view.
5.        The laboratory shall maintain a list of the isotope and total activity present within each container.  It is the responsibility of the Authorized User to assure that this list is promptly and accurately maintained.
6.        When the liquid radioactive waste container is nearly full, attach a Radioactive Material Tag to the container including the information documented in the General Radioactive Waste Handling section, part 8.  Verify that the label is not obscured from view.
7.        Call the Assistant Radiation Safety Officer (x3373) to arrange a pickup
8.        Short-lived liquid waste may be stored on site for decay until the activity of the waste is indistinguishable from background (the waste measures less than 2x the average background value in a low background area using an appropriate radiation detector).  
  • When the radioactive waste is indistinguishable from background levels of radiation, the Authorized User (or laboratory representative) shall contact the Radiation Safety Office.  The Radiation Safety Office shall analyze the waste to certify that the waste is no longer radioactive.  
  • If the waste is no longer radioactive, it shall be disposed of as per the rules and regulations of the UMass Environmental Health and Safety Office (x2618).
9.        Organic based Liquid Scintillation cocktails containing 3H or 14C at concentrations below 0.05 mCi/ml (1.11´105 dpm/ml) may be disposed of as toxic waste without regard to radioactivity (that is, it is considered non-radioactive).  Call the Environmental Health and Safety Office for further information.
10.    Disposal of aqueous liquids via a designated radioisotope laboratory sink may be performed  only if the laboratory meets the following criteria:
  • the isotope concentration falls within the limits documented in the UMass Lowell Radiation Safety Manual (Appendix IX) and 10CFR20 App. B, AND, 
  • The waste is an aqueous solution AND
  • The Authorized User has been previously approved by the Environmental Health and Safety office (EH&S) for sink release for the specific chemical in question.  Approval may be obtained by submitting a “Non Hazardous Waste Determination Form” to the EH&S office.  Contact EH&S for more information
NOTE:The Radiation Safety Office shall be notified of all sink disposals prior to disposal.
11.    The Authorized User is responsible for maintaining records which document the total activity disposed via the sink disposal route, the isotope disposed, the date, liquid volume, and the activity concentration of the solution.  NO permit holder may dispose of more than 100 mCi per day through the sanitary sewer system without prior approval of the Radiation Safety Office.