Radon Doesn’t Have to Be Scary
It’s an invisible, odourless, tasteless radioactive gas that invades all homes and buildings and can accumulate to extremely high levels. When inhaled, it irreparably damages the DNA in healthy lung tissue cells and causes lung cancer. It kills over 3000 Canadians every year. It’s impossible to predict which homes and buildings will have dangerously high levels. It sounds scary but it really doesn’t have to be.
We’re talking about radon. Radon is a gas that comes from the natural breakdown of uranium in the soil. It’s been around forever and we’ve all been breathing it all our lives. Outside, radon levels are low. The danger comes when radon gas enters a home or other building and accumulates to high levels. Left untreated at these high levels is when radon can become scary. But the good news is that you can easily prevent the scariness.
The first and most important thing to do, is to test for radon. Every home and building will have some radon in it, the only way to know how much, is to test. Test your home, test your workplace, test your school – every building should be tested for radon. You can contact a radon measurement professional certified by the Canadian National Radon Proficiency Program (C-NRPP) or you can purchase a do-it-yourself long-term test kit. Long-term test kits measure the radon in indoor air over a period of 90 days or more and they are by far, the most reliable and accurate tests.
If your radon results are above the Canadian action guideline (200Bq/m3), it can be fixed for a reasonable cost. The most common and effective solution is the installation of an active soil depressurization system. This system draws the radon from below the building to the outside to stop it from entering the building and reduces radon levels by over 90%. Be sure to contact a C-NRPP-certified radon mitigation professional to help you find the most effective radon-reduction method best suited to your home or building.
Radon gas can be scary but it really doesn’t have to be. With an easy test, you can protect your health.
To find where you can get a radon test kit in your community and for a list of C-NRPP-certified radon professionals, visit www.takeactiononradon.ca/test.