United States Nuclear Regulatory Commission - Protecting People and the Environment

U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission

Licensing of Dial Painting Activities by Jewelers and Watch Repairers

HPPOS-142 PDR-9111210381

Title: Licensing of Dial Painting Activities by Jewelers

and Watch Repairers

See the memorandum from T. F. Dorian to G. W. Kerr dated

October 25, 1976. It is an OELD opinion that Agreement

State licensees can manufacture exempt products but they

must possess an NRC license to distribute the exempt

products.

NRC has retained the authority under 10 CFR 150.15 (a) (6)

to license under 10 CFR 32.14 and 30.15 (a) (1) watch

repairers and jewelers who strip radium paint from dials

and hands of watches and reapply tritium paint. Subsection

274c. of the Atomic Energy Act (AEA) of 1954, as amended,

provides that notwithstanding any agreement between the

Commission and any State, the Commission is authorized to

require that "the manufacturer, processor, or producer of

any equipment, device, commodity, or other product

containing source, byproduct, or special nuclear material

shall not transfer possession or control of such product

except pursuant to a license issued by the Commission."

In issuing 10 CFR Part 150, which implemented certain AEA

provisions, the Commission exercised its authority under

AEA subsection 274c. by providing in 10 CFR 150.15 (a) (6)

that persons in Agreement States are not exempt from the

Commission's licensing requirements with respect to: "The

transfer or possession or control by the manufactures,

processor, or producer of any equipment, device, commodity,

or other product containing source, byproduct, or special

nuclear material, intended for use by the general public."

With respect to the meaning of "products intended for use

by the general public," the Statement of Considerations

accompanying Part 150 read, in part, as follows: "Control

over consumer type devices, such as luminous watches, would

be retained by the Commission."

On May 16, 1969, NRC amended 150.15 (a) (6), and the

Statement of Considerations accompanying the amendment that

read, in part, as follows:

"In retaining regulatory authority over transfer of

products 'intended for use by the general public' the

Commission was seeking to maintain surveillance over the

safety of products containing radioactive materials,

without the imposition of regulatory controls, and to be

able to assess the effect of the attendant uncontrolled

addition of these radioactive materials to the environment."

"In view of the increasing difficulty in determining

whether or not such products are intended for use by the

general public, the Commission has adopted the amendment of

Part 150 set out below, which changes 150.15 (a) (6) by

deleting the phrase 'product ... intended for use by the

general public' and substituted the phrase 'product ...

whose subsequent possession, use, transfer and disposal by

all other persons are exempted for licensing and regulatory

requirements of the Commission under Parts 30 and 40 of

this chapter.'"

"Under Part 150 as amended below the transfer or possession

or control by a manufacturer, processor, or producer of any

equipment, device, commodity, or other product containing

byproduct material or source material whose subsequent

possession, use, transfer, and disposal by all other person

are exempted from Commission licensing and regulatory

requirements under Parts 30 and 40, is not subject to the

licensing and regulatory authority of an Agreement State

even though the product is manufactured, processed, or

produced pursuant to an Agreement State license. The

manufacturer of such products in an Agreement State is

subject to the Commission's regulatory authority with

respect to transfer of any product which has been so

exempted from the Commission's licensing and regulatory

requirements. The Commission has confined its regulation

of the transfer of exempt products to specifications for

the products, quality control procedure, requirements for

testing, and labeling. The authority of Agreement States

to regulate any radiation hazards that might arise during

manufacture of such products is not affected by the

amendment. Accordingly, dual regulation will continue to be

avoided."

Watch repairers and jewelers engaged either in stripping

radium paint from a watch and reapplying tritium paint or

in repair or reconditioning a watch and reapplying tritium

paint, can be called processors (see, for example, 10 CFR

32.22). This interpretation matches portions of the

Statement of Considerations of the amendment to 10 CFR

150.15 (a) (6) quoted earlier.

Regulatory references: 10 CFR 150.15

Subject codes: 3.5, 12.2, 12.9

Applicability: Byproduct Material

Page Last Reviewed/Updated Thursday, March 29, 2012