Key messages

  • The Radiation Act 2005 establishes a number of offences.
  • The Act also fixes the corresponding number of penalty units for each offence.
  • The value of a penalty unit for a financial year is fixed by the Treasurer.

The Radiation Act 2005 (the Act) establishes a number of serious offences relating to such matters as:

  • performing unlicensed activities
  • failing to report radiation incidents
  • not complying with licence conditions
  • abandoning a radiation source
  • causing another person to receive a higher radiation dose than what is prescribed
  • causing serious harm to the environment.

The Act also fixes the corresponding number of penalty units for each offence. The value of a penalty unit for a financial year is fixed by the Treasurer under s. 5(3) of the Monetary Units Act 2004. The Treasurer has fixed the values for 2019-20 at $165.22.

As a guide, for the 2019-20 year:

  • 600 penalty units is in excess of $99,000
  • 1,200 penalty units is in excess of $198,000
  • 1,800 penalty units is in excess of $297,000
  • 3,000 penalty units is in excess of $495,000
  • 6,000 penalty units is in excess of $991,000
  • 9,000 penalty units is in excess of $1,480,000.

Some examples of penalties include the following:

  • Section 12 creates an offence for a person to conduct a radiation practice unless they hold a current management licence that authorises that practice or they are exempted from that requirement under s. 16 of the Radiation Act. The penalty for an individual is up to 1,800 penalty units; for a company it is up to 9,000 penalty units.
  • Section 13 creates an offence for a person to use a radiation source unless they hold a current use licence that authorises that use or they are exempted from that requirement under s. 16 of the Act and they are using the source in accordance with that exemption OR they are an approved tester who is using the source in line with their tester's approval. The penalty for an individual is up to 1,200 penalty units.
  • Section 14 creates an offense for an owner or occupier of land to (i) construct a radiation facility on land they own or occupy, or (ii) permit or allow another person to construct a radiation facility on land they own or occupy, or (iii) change the use of land that they own or occupy to use for a radiation facility, or (iv) change the use of a building that they own or occupy to use as a radiation facility unless they hold a facility construction licence. The penalty for an individual is up to 600 penalty units; for a body corporate up to 3000 penalty units.
  • Section 15 creates an offence for a person to not comply with the conditions of their licence. In the case of management licences, the penalty for an individual is up to 1,200 penalty units. For a company or other type of body corporate it is up to 6,000 penalty units. In the case of individual use licences, it is up to 600 penalty units.
  • Section 18 creates the offence for a management licence holder to allow persons to use a radiation source when the management licence holder knows that the person does not hold the appropriate use licence. The penalty is up to 1,200 penalty units for individuals, or up to 6,000 penalty units for a company or other type of body corporate.
  • Section 19 creates the offence for a management licence holder to allow persons to use a radiation source in a manner that the management licence holder knows is contrary to the conditions of the person's use licence. The penalty is up to 1,200 penalty units for an individual, or up to 6,000 penalty units for the company or other type of body corporate.
  • Section 20 requires that the management licence holder, on becoming aware that a radiation source that was in their possession is lost or has been stolen, must immediately notify the Secretary of the department. The penalty for not notifying is up to 600 penalty units for an individual, or up to 3,000 penalty units for a company or other type of body corporate.
  • Section 21 requires that the management licence holder must not abandon a radiation source. The penalty for an individual is up to 1,800 penalty units; for a company it is up to 9,000 penalty units.
  • Section 22 creates an offence for a person - when conducting a radiation practice - to knowingly, recklessly or negligently cause another person to receive a radiation dose that is greater than the dose prescribed in the regulations. The penalty is up to 600 penalty units for an individual, or up to 3,000 penalty units for a company or other type of body corporate. There are similar offences for a person using a radiation dose to cause a 'high radiation dose' to another person.
  • Section 23 creates the offence of causing serious harm to the environment when conducting a radiation practice. The penalty is up to 1,800 penalty units for an individual, or up to 9,000 penalty units for a company or other type of body corporate.
  • Section 36 creates the offence for a person in possession of a prescribed radiation source to allow use of a prescribed radiation source unless there is a current certificate of compliance in respect of that source. The penalty for individuals is up to 1,200 penalty units, and for companies or other type of body corporates it is up to 6,000 penalty units.