Goatguy adjusted the scale of the EPA radiation chart. Original chart is below.
The average person in the United States receives about 360 mrem every year whole body equivalent dose At low doses, such as what we receive every day from background radiation, the cells repair the damage rapidly. At higher doses (up to 100 rem), the cells might not be able to repair the damage, and the cells may either be changed permanently or die. At even higher doses, the cells cannot be replaced fast enough and tissues fail to function. An example of this would be “radiation sickness.” This is a condition that results after high doses to the whole body (over 100 rem), where the intestinal lining is damaged to the point that it cannot perform its functions of intake of water and nutrients, and protecting the body against infection. This leads to nausea, diarrhea and general weakness. With higher whole body doses (over 300 rem), the body’s immune system is damaged and cannot fight off infection and disease. At whole body doses near 400 rem, if no medical attention is given, about 50% of the people are expected to die within 60 days of the exposure, due mostly from infections.
Smoking 20 cigs a day 6 years Overweight (15%) 2 years Alcohol (US Ave) 1 year All Accidents 207 days All Natural Hazards 7 days Occupational dose (300 mrem/yr) 15 days Occupational dose (1 rem/yr) 51 days
You can also use the same approach to looking at risks on the job:
Industry type Est. life expectancy lost
All Industries 60 days Agriculture 320 days Construction 227 days Mining and quarrying 167 days Manufacturing 40 days Occupational dose (300 mrem/yr) 15 days Occupational dose (1 rem/yr) 51 days
* 1 Sv (Sievert) = 100 rem * 1 mSv = 100 mrem = 0.1 rem * 1 μSv = 0.1 mrem * 1 rem = 0.01 Sv = 10 mSv * 1 mrem = 0.00001 Sv = 0.01 mSv = 10 μSv
* One becquerel (Bq) is equal to one disintegration per second, or 60 dpm.
* One curie (Ci) is equal to 3.7 x 10 10 Bq or dps, which is equal to 2.22 x 10^12 dpm.
The curie (Ci) is an older, non-SI unit of radioactivity equal to the activity of 1 gram of radium-226.
The conversion factors are:
1 Ci = 3.7×1010 Bq 1 Ci = 37 GBq 1 μCi = 37,000 Bq 1 Bq = 2.70×10−11 Ci 1 Bq = 2.70×10−5 μCi 1 GBq = 0.0270 Ci
The original EPA chart
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