Non-Ionising radiation (NIR) is the term used to describe the part of the electromagnetic spectrum covering two main regions, namely optical radiation (ultraviolet (UV), visible and infra-red and electromagnetic fields (EMFs) (power frequencies, microwaves and radio frequencies).
Optical radiation is another term for light, covering ultraviolet (UV) radiation, visible light, and infra-red radiation. The greatest risks to health are probably posed by:
- UV radiation from the sun. Exposure of the eyes to UV radiation.
- The misuse of powerful lasers.
Electromagnetic fields (EMFs) arise whenever electrical energy is used. So for example, EMFs arise in our home from electrical appliances in the kitchen, from work processes such as radio frequency heating and drying and in the world at large from radio, TV and telecoms broadcasting masts and security detection devices. Source:http://www.hse.gov.uk/radiation/ionising/index.htm
The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) makes provision for IRR medicals under the The Ionising Radiation (MedicalExposure) Regulations 2000
These are statutory medical examinations carried out only by HSE Appointed doctors (ADs). IRR medicals are for employees likely to receive an effective dose in exposure to radiation.
It is generally known that ionising radiations are potentially harmful but like all hazardous agents, having adequate control measures in place can guard against the development of unwanted health effects.
The Ionising Regulations require that workers exposed to work related ionising radiation are designated as classified workers and undergo health surveillance. This must be done annually and under the authority of an appointed HSE physician. Source : The Ionising Radiation (Medical Exposure) Regulations 2000