W. Va. Code R. § 64-23-15 - Radiation Safety Requirements for Wireline Services Operations and Subsurface Tracer Studies

Current through Register Vol. XXXVIII, No. 51, December 23, 2021

15.1. Purpose. The rules in this Section establish radiation safety requirements for using sources of radiation for wireline service operations including mineral-logging, radioactive markers, and subsurface tracer studies. The requirements of this Section are in addition to, and not in substitution for, the requirements of Sections 1., 5., 6., 11., and 13. of this rule.
15.2. Scope. The rules in this Section apply to all registrants who use sources of radiation for wireline service operations including mineral-logging, radioactive markers, or subsurface tracer studies.
15.3. Definitions. As used in this Section, the following definitions apply:
15.3.a. Field station - a facility where radioactive sources may be stored or used and from which equipment is dispatched to temporary Job sites.
15.3.b. Injection Tool - a device used for controlled subsurface injection of radioactive tracer material.
15.3.c. Logging assistant - any individual who, under the personal supervision of a logging supervisor, handles sealed sources or tracers that are not in logging tools or shipping containers or who performs surveys required by Subsection 15.20.
15.3.d. Logging Supervisor - the individual who uses sources of radiation or provides personal supervision of the utilization of sources of radiation at the well site.
15.3.e. Logging Tool - a device used subsurface to perform well-logging.
15.3.f. Mineral Logging - any logging performed for the purpose of mineral exploration other than oil or gas.
15.3.g. Personal Supervision - guidance and instruction by the supervisor who is physically present at the jobsite and watching the performance of the operation in such proximity that contact can be maintained and immediate assistance given as required.
15.3.h. Radioactive Marker - radioactive material placed subsurface or on a structure intended for subsurface use for the purpose of depth determination or direction orientation.
15.3.i. Source Holder - a housing or assembly into which a radioactive source is placed for the purpose of facilitating the handling and use of the source in well-logging operations.
15.3.j. Subsurface Tracer Study - the release of a substance tagged with radioactive material for the purpose of tracing the movement or position of the tagged substance in the well-bore or adjacent formation.
15.3.k. Temporary Jobsite - a location where radioactive materials are present for the purpose of performing wireline service operations or subsurface tracer studies.
15.3.l. Uranium Sinker Bar - a weight containing depleted uranium used to pull a logging tool down toward the bottom of a well.
15.3.m. Well-bore - a drilled hole in which wireline service operations or subsurface tracer studies are performed.
15.3.n. Well-logging - all operations involving the lowering and raising of measuring devices or tools which may contain sources of radiation into well-bores or cavities for the purpose of obtaining information about the well or adjacent formations.
15.3.o. Wireline - a cable containing one or more electrical conductors which is used to lower and raise logging tools in the well-bore.
15.3.p. Wireline Service Operation - any evaluation or mechanical service which is performed in the well-bore using devices on a wireline.
15.4. Prohibition. No registrant shall perform wireline service operations with a sealed source or sealed sources unless, prior to commencement of the operation, the registrant has a written agreement with the well-operator, well-owner, drilling contractor, or land owner that:
15.4.a. In the event a sealed source is lodged downhole, a reasonable effort at recovery will be made; and
15.4.b. In the event a decision is made to abandon the sealed source downhole, the requirements of Subdivision 15.23.c. shall be met.
15.5. Limits on Levels of Radiation. Sources of radiation shall be used, stored, and transported in such a manner that the transportation requirements of Section 15. and the dose limitation requirements of Section 6 of this rule are met.
15.6. Storage Precautions
15.6.a. Each source of radiation, except accelerators, shall be provided with a storage or transport container. The container shall be provided with a lock, or tamper seal for calibration sources, to prevent unauthorized removal of, or exposure to, the source of radiation.
15.6.b. Sources of radiation shall be stored in a manner which will minimize danger from explosion or fire.
15.7. Transport Precautions. Transport containers shall be physically secured to the transporting vehicle to prevent accidental loss, tampering, or unauthorized removal.
15.8. Radiation Survey Instruments
15.8.a. The registrant shall maintain sufficient calibrated and operable radiation survey instruments at each field station to make physical radiation surveys as required by this Section and Subsection 6.5 of this rule. Instrumentation shall be capable of measuring one-tenth (0.1) milliroentgen (twenty five and eight-tenths [25.8] nanocoulombs/kg) per hour through at least fifty (50) milliroentgens (twelve and nine-tenths [12.9] icrocoulombs/kg) per hour. Survey instruments acquired before July 1, 20016 and capable of measuring one-tenth (0.1) milliroentgen (twenty five and eight-tenths [25.8] nanocoulombs/kg) per hour through at least twenty (20) milliroentgens (five and sixteen one-hundredths [5.16] microcoulombs/kg) per hour also satisfies this requirement July 1, 2006.
15.8.b. Each radiation survey instrument shall be calibrated:
15.8.b.1. At intervals not to exceed six (6) months and after each instrument servicing;
15.8.b.2. For linear scale instruments, at two points located approximately one-third (a) and two-thirds (b) of full-scale on each scale; for logarithmic scale instruments, at midrange of each decade, and at two (2) points of at least one decade; and for digital instruments, at appropriate points; and
15.8.b.3. So that accuracy within twenty (20) percent of the true radiation level can be demonstrated on each scale.
15.8.c. Calibration records shall be maintained for a period of two (2) years for inspection by the agency.
15.9. Leak Testing of Sealed Sources
15.9.a. Requirements. Each registrant using sealed sources of radioactive material shall have the sources tested for leakage. Records of leak test results shall be kept in units of microcuries (Bq) and maintained for inspection by the agency for six (6) months after the next required leak test is performed or until transferor disposal of the sealed source.
15.9.b. Method of Testing. Tests for leakage shall be performed only by persons specifically authorized to perform such tests by the agency, the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC), an agreement state, or a licensing state. The test sample shall be taken from the surface of the source, source holder, or from the surface of the device in which the source is stored or mounted and on which one might expect contamination to accumulate. The test sample shall be analyzed for radioactive contamination, and the analysis shall be capable of detecting the presence of five one-thousandths (0.005) microcurie (one hundred eighty five [185] Bq) of radioactive material on the test sample.
15.9.c. Interval of Testing. Each sealed source of radioactive material shall be tested at intervals not to exceed six (6) months. In the absence of a certificate from a transferor indicating that a test has been made prior to the transfer, the sealed source shall not be put into use until tested. If, for any reason, it is suspected that a sealed source may be leaking, it shall be removed from service immediately and tested for leakage as soon as practical.
15.9.d. Leaking or Contaminated Sources. If the test reveals the presence of five one-thousandths (0.005) microcurie (one hundred eighty five (185) Bq) or more of leakage or contamination, the registrant shall immediately withdraw the source from use and shall cause it to be decontaminated, repaired, or disposed of in accordance with this rule. A report describing the equipment involved, the test results, and the corrective action taken shall be filed with the agency within five days of receiving the test results.
15.9.e. Exemptions. The following sources are exempted from the periodic leak test requirements of Subdivision 15.9.a. through d.:
15.9.e.1. Hydrogen-3 sources;
15.9.e.2. Sources of radioactive material with a half-life of thirty (30) days or less;
15.9.e.3. Sealed sources of radioactive material in gaseous form;
15.9.e.4. Sources of beta- or gamma-emitting radioactive material with an activity of one hundred (100) microcuries (three and seven-tenths [3.7] MBq) or less; and
15.9.e.5. Sources of alpha-emitting radioactive material with an activity of ten (10) microcuries (thirty seven one-hundredths [0.370] MBq) or less.
15.10. Quarterly Inventory. Each registrant shall conduct a quarterly physical inventory to account for all sources of radiation. Records of inventories shall be maintained for two years from the date of the inventory for inspection by the agency and shall include the quantities and kinds of sources of radiation, the location where sources of radiation are assigned, the date of the inventory, and the name of the individual conducting the inventory.
15.11. Utilization Records. Each registrant shall maintain current records, which shall be kept available for inspection by the agency for two years from the date of the recorded event, showing the following information for each source of radiation:
15.11.a. Make, model number, and a serial number or a description of each source of radiation used;
15.11.b. The identity of the well-logging supervisor or field unit to whom assigned;
15.11.c. Locations where used and dates of use; and
15.11.d. In the case of tracer materials and radioactive markers, the utilization record shall indicate the radionuclide and activity used in a particular well.
15.12. Design, Performance, and Certification Criteria for Sealed Sources Used in Downhole Operations
15.12.a. Each sealed source, except those containing radioactive material in gaseous form, used in downhole operations and manufactured after July 1, 2002 shall be certified by the manufacturer, or other testing organization acceptable to the agency, to meet the following minimum criteria:
15.12.a.1. Be of doubly encapsulated construction;
15.12.a.2. Contain radioactive material whose chemical and physical forms are as insoluble and non-dispersible as practical; and
15.12.a.3. Has been individually pressure tested to at least twenty four thousand six hundred fifty six (24,656) pounds per square inch absolute (one hundred seventy [170] MN/m2) without failure.
15.12.b. For sealed sources, except those containing radioactive material in gaseous form, acquired after July 1, 2002, in the absence of a certificate from a transferor certifying that an individual sealed source meets the requirements of Subsection 15.12., the sealed source shall not be put into use until such determinations and testing have been performed.
15.12.c. Each sealed source, except those containing radioactive material in gaseous form, used in downhole operations after [insert a date two (2) years after the effective date of this rule] shall be certified by the manufacturer, or other testing organization acceptable to the agency, as meeting the sealed source performance requirements for oil well-logging as contained in the American National Standard N43.6, "Classification of Sealed Radioactive Sources," (formerly N542, ANSI/NBS 126) in effect on July 1, 2001.
15.12.d. Certification documents shall be maintained for inspection by the agency for a period of two years after source disposal. If the source is abandoned downhole, the certification documents shall be maintained until the agency authorizes disposition.
15.13. Labeling
15.13.a. Each source, source holder, or logging tool containing radioactive material shall bear a durable, legible, and clearly visible marking or label, which has, as a minimum, the standard radiation caution symbol, without the conventional color requirement, and the following wording:

DANGER16

RADIOACTIVE

This labeling shall be on the smallest component transported as a separate piece of equipment.

15.13.b. Each transport container shall have permanently attached to it a durable, legible, and clearly visible label which has, as a minimum, the standard radiation caution symbol and the following wording:

DANGER17

RADIOACTIVE

NOTIFY CIVIL AUTHORITIES [OR NAME OF COMPANY]

15.14. Inspection and Maintenance
15.14.a. Each registrant shall conduct, at intervals not to exceed six months, a program of inspection and maintenance of source holders, logging tools, source handling tools, storage containers, transport containers, and injection tools to assure proper labeling and physical condition. Records of inspection and maintenance shall be maintained for a period of two years for inspection by the agency.
15.14.b. If any inspection conducted pursuant to Subdivision 15.14.a. reveals damage to labeling or components critical to radiation safety, the device shall be removed from service until repairs have been made.
15.14.c. If a sealed source is stuck in the source holder, the registrant shall not perform any operation, such as drilling, cutting, or chiseling, on the source holder unless the registrant is specifically approved by the NRC, an agreement state, or a licensing state to perform this operation.
15.14.d. The repair, opening, or modification of any sealed source shall be performed only by persons specifically authorized to do so by the agency, the NRC, an agreement state or a licensing state.
15.15. Training Requirements
15.15.a. No registrant shall permit any individual to act as a logging supervisor as defined in this Section until such individual has:
15.15.a.1. Received, in a course recognized by the agency, the NRC, an agreement state, or a licensing state, instruction in the subjects outlined in Table 64-23 Ff and demonstrated an understanding thereof;
15.15.a.2. Read and received instruction in the rules contained in this Section and the applicable Sections of Sections 1., 6. and 13. of this rule or their equivalent, conditions of appropriate certificate of registration, and the registrant's operating and emergency procedures, and demonstrated an understanding thereof; and
15.15.a.3. Demonstrated competence to use sources of radiation, related handling tools, and radiation survey instruments which will be used on the job.
15.15.b. No registrant shall permit any individual to assist in the handling of sources of radiation until such individual has:
15.15.b.1. Read or received instruction in the registrant's operating and emergency procedures and demonstrated an understanding thereof; and
15.15.b.2. Demonstrated competence to use, under the personal supervision of the logging supervisor, the sources of radiation, related handling tools, and radiation survey instruments which will be used on the job.
15.15.c. The registrant shall maintain employee training records for inspection by the agency for two years following termination of the individual's employment.
15.16. Operating and Emergency Procedures. The registrant's operating and emergency procedures shall include instructions in at least the following:
15.16.a. Handling and use of sources of radiation to be employed so that no individual is likely to be exposed to radiation doses in excess of the standards established in Section 6. of this rule;
15.16.b. Methods and occasions for conducting radiation surveys;
15.16.c. Methods and occasions for locking and securing sources of radiation;
15.16.d. Personnel monitoring and the use of personnel monitoring equipment;
15.16.e. Transportation to temporary Job sites and field stations, including the packaging and placing of sources of radiation in vehicles, placarding of vehicles, and securing sources of radiation during transportation;
15.16.f. Minimizing exposure of individuals in the event of an accident;
15.16.g. Procedure for notifying proper personnel in the event of an accident;
15.16.h. Maintenance of records;
15.16.i. Use, inspection and maintenance of source holders, logging tools, source handling tools, storage containers, transport containers, and injection tools;
15.16.j. Procedure to be followed in the event a sealed source is lodged downhole;
15.16.k. Procedures to be used for picking up, receiving, and opening packages containing radioactive material;
15.16.l. For the use of tracers, decontamination of the environment, equipment, and personnel;
15.16.m. Maintenance of records generated by logging personnel at temporary job sites;
15.16.n. Notifying proper persons in the event of an accident; and
15.16.o. Actions to be taken if a sealed source is ruptured, including actions to prevent the spread of contamination and minimize inhalation and ingestion of radioactive material and actions to obtain suitable radiation survey instruments as required by Subsection 15.8.
15.17. Personnel Monitoring
15.17.a. No registrant shall permit any individual to act as a logging supervisor or to assist in the handling of sources of radiation unless each such individual wears either a film badge or a thermoluminescent dosimeter (TLD). Each film badge or TLD shall be assigned to and worn by only one individual. Film badges must be replaced at least monthly and tlds replaced at least quarterly. After replacement, each film badge or TLD must be promptly processed.
15.17.b. Personnel monitoring records shall be maintained for inspection until the agency authorizes disposition.
15.18. Precautionary Procedures in Logging and Subsurface Tracer Studies
15.18.a. During each logging or tracer application, the logging supervisor or other designated employee shall maintain direct surveillance of the operation to protect against unauthorized or unnecessary entry into a restricted area, as defined in Section 1. of this rule.
15.18.b. The registrant shall provide and require the use of tools that will assure remote handling of sealed sources other than low-activity calibration sources.
15.18.c. Protective gloves and other appropriate protective clothing and equipment shall be used by all personnel handling radioactive tracer material. Precautions shall be taken to avoid ingestion or inhalation of radioactive material.
15.18.d. No registrant shall cause the injection of radioactive material into potable aquifers without prior written authorization from the agency.
15.19. Particle Accelerators. No registrant shall permit above-ground testing of particle accelerators, designed for use in well-logging, which results in the production of radiation, except in areas or facilities so controlled or shielded that the requirements of Subsections 6.4. and 6.5. of this rule, as applicable, are met.
15.20. Radiation Surveys
15.20.a. Radiation surveys or calculations shall be made and recorded for each area where radioactive materials are used and stored.
15.20.b. Radiation surveys shall be made and recorded for the radiation levels in occupied positions and on the exterior of each vehicle used to transport radioactive material. Such surveys shall include each source of radiation or combination of sources to be transported in the vehicle.
15.20.c. If the sealed source assembly is removed from the logging tool before departing the jobsite, the logging tool detector shall be energized, or a survey meter used, to assure that the logging tool is free of contamination.
15.20.d. Radiation surveys shall be made and recorded at the jobsite or well-head for each tracer operation, except those using Hydrogen-3, Carbon-14, and Sulfur-35. These surveys shall include measurements of radiation levels before and after the operation.
15.20.e. Records required pursuant to Subdivision 15.20.a. through d. shall include the dates, the identification of individuals making the survey, the identification of survey instruments used, and an exact description of the location of the survey. Records of these surveys shall be maintained for inspection by the agency for two years after completion of the survey.
15.21. Documents and Records Required at Field Stations. Each registrant shall maintain, for inspection by the agency, the following documents and records for the specific devices and sources used at the field station:
15.21.a. Appropriate registration, certificate of registration, or equivalent documents;
15.21.b. Operating and emergency procedures;
15.21.c. Applicable rules;
15.21.d. Records of the latest survey instrument calibrations pursuant to Subsection 15.8.;
15.21.e. Records of the latest leak test results pursuant to Subsection 15.9.;
15.21.f. Records of quarterly inventories required pursuant to Subsection 15.10.;
15.21.g. Utilization records required pursuant to Subsection 15.11.;
15.21.h. Records of inspection and maintenance required pursuant to Subsection 15.14.;
15.21.i. Survey records required pursuant to Subsection 15.20.; and
15.21.j. Training records required pursuant to Subsection 15.15.
15.22. Documents and Records Required at Temporary Job sites. Each registrant conducting operations at a temporary jobsite shall have the following documents and records available at that site for inspection by the agency:
15.22.a. Operating and emergency procedures;
15.22.b. Survey records required pursuant to Subsection 15.20. for the period of operation at the site;
15.22.c. Evidence of current calibration for the radiation survey instruments in use at the site;
15.22.d. When operating in the state under reciprocity, a copy of the appropriate registration, certificate of registration, or equivalent document or documents; and
15.22.e. Shipping papers for the transportation of radioactive material.
15.23. Notification of Incidents, Abandonment, and Lost Sources
15.23.a. Notification of incidents and sources lost in other than downhole logging operations shall be made in accordance with appropriate provisions of Section 6. of this rule.
15.23.b. Whenever a sealed source or device containing radioactive material is lodged downhole, the registrant shall:
15.23.b.1. Monitor at the surface for the presence of radioactive contamination with a radiation survey instrument or logging tool during logging tool recovery operations; and
15.23.b.2. Notify the agency immediately by telephone and subsequently, within thirty (30) days, by confirmatory letter if the registrant knows or has reason to believe that a sealed source has been ruptured. This letter shall identify the well or other location, describe the magnitude and extent of the escape of radioactive material, assess the consequences of the rupture, and explain efforts planned or being taken to mitigate these consequences.
15.23.c. When it becomes apparent that efforts to recover the radioactive source will not be successful, the registrant shall:
15.23.c.1. Advise the well-operator of an appropriate method of abandonment, which shall include:
15.23.c.1.A. The immobilization and sealing in place of the radioactive source with a cement plug,
15.23.c.1.B. The setting of a whipstock or other deflection device, and
15.23.c.1.C. The mounting of a permanent identification plaque at the surface of the well, containing the appropriate information required by Subdivision 15.23.;
15.23.c.2. Notify the agency by telephone, giving the circumstances of the loss, and request approval of the proposed abandonment procedures; and
15.23.c.3. File a written report with the agency within thirty (30) days of the abandonment. The registrant shall send a copy of the report to the division of environmental protection that issued permits or otherwise approved of the drilling operation. The report shall contain the following information:
15.23.c.3.A. Date of occurrence;
15.23.c.3.B. A description of the well logging source involved, including the radionuclide and its quantity, chemical, and physical form;
15.23.c.3.C. Surface location and identification of the well;
15.23.c.3.D. Results of efforts to immobilize and seal the source in place;
15.23.c.3.E. A brief description of the attempted recovery effort;
15.23.c.3.F. Depth of the source;
15.23.c.3.G. Depth of the top of the cement plug;
15.23.c.3.H. Depth of the well;
15.23.c.3.I. Any other information, such as a warning statement, contained on the permanent identification plaque; and
15.23.c.3.J. The names of state agencies receiving a copy of this report.
15.23.d. Whenever a sealed source containing radioactive material is abandoned downhole, the registrant shall provide a permanent plaque18 for posting the well or well-bore. This plaque shall:
15.23.d.1. Be constructed of long-lasting material, such as stainless steel or monel; and
15.23.d.2. Contain the following information engraved on its face:
15.23.d.2.A. The word "CAUTION";
15.23.d.2.B. The radiation symbol without the conventional color requirement;
15.23.d.2.C. The date of abandonment;
15.23.d.2.D. The name of the well-operator or well-owner;
15.23.d.2.E. The well name and well identification number or numbers or other designation;
15.23.d.2.F. The sealed source or sources by radionuclide and activity;
15.23.d.2.G. The source depth and the depth to the top of the plug; and
15.23.d.2.H. An appropriate warning, depending on the specific circumstances of each abandonment.19
15.23.e. The registrant shall immediately notify the agency by telephone and subsequently by confirming letter if the registrant knows or has reason to believe that radioactive material has been lost in or to an underground potable aquifer. Such notice shall designate the well location and shall describe the magnitude and extent of loss of radioactive material, assess the consequences of such loss, and explain efforts planned or being taken to mitigate these consequences.

Notes

W. Va. Code R. § 64-23-15

The following state regulations pages link to this page.



State regulations are updated quarterly; we currently have two versions available. Below is a comparison between our most recent version and the prior quarterly release. More comparison features will be added as we have more versions to compare.