About the Indoor and Radiological Health (IRH) Branch

Mission
The mission of the Indoor and Radiological Health (IRH) Branch, formerly known as the Noise, Radiation and Indoor Air Quality (NRIAQ) Branch, is to conduct assessment, develop policy, and provide assurance in the fields of community noise control, radiation control, mechanical ventilation, indoor air quality, asbestos abatement, and lead-based paint abatement.

Philosophy and Principles
The IRH Branch strives to promote public health in the community, minimize morbidity and mortality from specific public health hazards, and optimize regulated activities and workplaces. The resources of the IRH Branch are directed at those problems that pose the greatest risk to optimal public health.

The Indoor and Radiological Health Branch building

Background
The IRH Branch has its roots in the Department of Health’s former Bureau of Industrial Hygiene in the territorial days. In subsequent years, records revealed an Occupational Health-Radiological Health Branch. In the early seventies, the Occupational Health component of the branch was transferred to the State Department of Labor and Industrial Relations where it became the core for today’s Hawaii Occupational Safety and Health Division (HIOSH). In the same period, a noise program was developed in the branch via grant monies from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). Henceforth, the branch became known as the Noise and Radiation Branch. In the 1990’s, EPA-funded activities for indoor air quality, asbestos certification and accreditation, asbestos abatement notification, asbestos in schools, and lead-based paint were added to the branch. Today, we have a total of six programs in the Indoor and Radiological Health Branch: noise, radiation, air-conditioning/ventilation, indoor air quality, asbestos and lead.

Organizational Structure
Our branch is one of three branches in the Environmental Health Services Division (EHSD). The other branches are Sanitation/Vector Control and Food & Drug. Essentially, EHSD is an organization of traditional public health sections.  EHSD’s sister division is the Environmental Management Division (EMD), consisting of environmental protection sections such as Clean Air, Clean Water, Solid and Hazardous Waste, Safe Drinking Water, and Wastewater.  Both EHSD and EMD constitute the Environmental Health Administration (EHA) in the Department of Health.

The IRH Branch consists of:

Administration Unit – responsible for planning and implementing program policies, procedures, and services according to standards.

Noise Program – implements the the community noise program. This includes enforcement of maximum permissible sound levels for stationary noise sources and issuance of permits for agricultural, construction, and industrial activities.

Radiation Program – provides radiological incident response to control release of radioactive materials, licensing of all radiation facilities with electronic products emitting ionizing radiation and/or non-fission radioactive materials, licensing of radiation services such as x-ray equipment installation and medical physics, and providing administrative support to the Radiologic Technology Board’s licensing of radiographers, nuclear medicine technologists, and radiation therapists.

Air Conditioning/Ventilation Program – administers provisions and responds to complaints pertaining to air conditioning and ventilation systems.

Indoor Air Quality Program – administers the provisions relating to indoor air quality.

Asbestos and Lead-Based Paint Programs – administers the provisions relating to asbestos and lead in paint.

Legal Authority

Federal Laws
♦  Federal Mammography Quality Standards Act of 1992 (MQSA)
♦  Federal Clean Air Act (CAA)
♦  Federal Toxic Substance Control Act (TSCA)
♦  Residential Lead-Based Paint Hazard Reduction Act of 1992 (Title X)

Federal Regulations
♦  Title 21, Code of Federal Regulations, Part 1020, Radiation-Emitting Electronic Systems
♦  Title 21, Code of Federal Regulations, Part 900, Mammography Quality Standards Act
♦  Title 40, Code of Federal Regulations, Part 763, Asbestos Hazard Emergency Response Act (AHERA)
♦  Title 40, Code of Federal Regulations, Part 61, National Emission Standards for Hazardous Air Pollutants (NESHAPS)
♦  Title 40, Code of Federal Regulations, Part 745, Lead; Requirements for Lead-Based Paint Activities in Target Housing and Child-Occupied Facilities

State Laws (Hawaii Revised Statutes – HRS)
♦  HRS Chapter 342F, Noise Pollution
♦  HRS Chapter 321-11(21) Sources of Ionizing Radiation
♦  HRS Chapter 466J, Radiologic Technology
♦  HRS Chapter 321-411, 412 and 413, Indoor Air Quality
♦  HRS Chapter 321-11(3), Location, air space, ventilation
♦  HRS Chapter 321-11(27), Lead accreditation program
♦  HRS Chapter 342P, Asbestos and Lead

Administrative Rules (Hawaii Administrative Rules – HAR)
♦  HAR Title 11, Chapter 46, Community Noise Control
♦  HAR Title 11, Chapter 44, Radiologic Technology Rules
♦  HAR Title 11, Chapter 45, Radiation Control
♦  HAR Title 11, Chapter 39, Air Conditioning and Ventilation
♦  HAR Title 11, Chapters 501502503504 State Asbestos Rules
♦  HAR Title 11, Chapter 41, Lead-Based Paint Activities
♦  HAR Title 11, Chapter 48, Air Conditioning, Ventilation, and Indoor Air – (Proposed)

If you have any questions, please contact the:
Indoor and Radiological Health Branch
99-945 Halawa Valley Street
Aiea, HI 96701
Phone: (808) 586-4700
Fax: (808) 586-5838
Hours: Monday – Friday 7:45am – 4:30pm (Except for State holidays)
Jeffrey Eckerd, Program Manager

Last update: July 1, 2016
Website maintained by Kristie Kasaoka Kimura