Tuesday, 27 January 2004

Questions (123)

Brendan Howlin

Question:

236 Mr. Howlin asked the Tánaiste and Minister for Enterprise, Trade and Employment the number of tests for radon conducted in the past year by the Health and Safety Authority; if the Health and Safety Authority has taken action to ensure that workers' health is not endangered by radon; the nature of such action; and if she will make a statement on the matter. [1130/04]

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Written answers (Question to Minister for Enterprise)

Conducting tests for radon is not a function of the Health and Safety Authority. This function the responsibility of the Radiological Protection Institute of Ireland, RPII, which is the designated competent national authority for this purpose.

The relevant Irish legislation is the Radiological Protection Act 1991 (Ionising Radiation) Order 2000 (S.I. No. 125 of 2000). Under the Safety, Health and Welfare at Work Act 1989, employers are required to identify hazards arising in the workplace, assess the risks arising from those hazards and put in place measures to eliminate or control the risk measures. The authority, through seminars, etc., has reminded employers located in areas likely to exceed the threshold limit value set out in the statutory instrument of their obligations under the 1989 Act if the limit value is exceeded.