Re: Enforcement of the Ministerial ordinance on exemption of the Ordinance on Prevention of Ionizing Radiation Hazards in response to the situation resulting from the Tohoku-Pacific Ocean Earthquake in 2011.
The Ministerial ordinance on exemption of the Ordinance on Prevention of Ionizing Radiation Hazards in response to the situation resulting from the Tohoku-Pacific Ocean Earthquake in 2011 (MHLW Ordinance No.23, 2011; hereinafter referred to as “Ordinance No. 23, 2011”) is promulgated on the date of this notice to have come into force on 14 March 2011.
Ordinance No. 23, 2011 is intended to take emergency measures quickly to cope with a series of incidents at the TEPCO Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant associated with the Tohoku-Pacific Ocean Earthquake in order to prevent the propagation of the nuclear disaster. Therefore, the purposes shown in the following shall be understood thoroughly by all and all shall be careful that nothing goes amiss.
It should be noted that further additional directions might be made on the application of Ordinance No. 23, 2011.
- I Overview of Ordinance No.23, 2011
- During the period from the issuance of the declaration of a nuclear emergency situation pursuant to the provisions of Article 15, paragraph 2 in the Act on Special Measures Concerning Nuclear Emergency Preparedness (Act No. 156, 1999) to the issuance of the declaration cancelling the nuclear emergency situation pursuant to the provision of paragraph 4 of the said Article, due to the Tohoku-Pacific Ocean Earthquake in 2011, the upper radiation exposure dose limit for the emergency workers prescribed under Article 7, paragraph 2 of the Ordinance on Prevention of Ionizing Radiation Hazards ( MHLW Ordinance No. 41, 1972 ; hereinafter referred to as “the Ionizing Radiation Ordinance” ) was raised from 100 mSv to 250 mSv for the particularly unavoidable emergency case within the emergency measures response implementation area prescribed in Article 17, paragraph 8 of the said Act.
- II Details of Ordinance No.23, 2011
- The area where Ordinance No.23, 2011 is to be applied is within a 30km radius from the TEPCO Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant which is designated as an emergency response measures implementation area at present.
- Although the enforcement of Ordinance No.23, 2011 is begun on 14 March 2011, the radiation exposure dose for individuals who had been engaged for the emergency works and exposed to the radiation should be summed up for the period from the issuance of the declaration of the nuclear emergency situation to the issuance of the declaration cancelling the nuclear emergency situation.
- "Particularly unavoidable emergency case" in Ordinance No.23, 2011 means the case where actions to control the accident and actions for immediate and urgent relief are vital.
- Attention should also be paid to Note III-8. “Matters related to Article No.7” in the Labour Standards Bureau Notification No. 253, “Enforcement of the Ministerial Ordinances for partial revision of the Ordinance on Industrial Safety and Health and the Ordinance on Prevention of Ionizing Radiation Hazards” (30 March 2001).
- As for the follow-up health care for the workers who were exposed to radiation, instructions on the special medical examination and other required actions should be provided to such workers pursuant to the Article 66, paragraph 4 of the Industrial Safety and Health Act, and it should be ensured that the employers provide the workers engaged in the emergency works with medical examinations or procedures immediately pursuant to Article 44 of the Ionizing Radiation Ordinance.