Public Health England (PHE) in the United Kingdom recommends that radon levels are reduced in the home. Statistics show there are between 1100 and 2000 lung cancer deaths each year, caused by radon gas. The average levels of radon found in the UK is 20 becquerels per cubic metre which is harmless. The Action level endorsed by the government is 200 Bq-m³ and the Target level is 100 Bq-m³. To determine the radon gas levels in your home, a radon test needs to be carried out. Regardless of any indicative mapping or online postcode radon level estimates, the only way to know what levels of radon gas are in your property is to test. A radon test for a domestic house is carried out using two detectors, one placed in the master bedroom and one in the living room for a three month period (or at least 90 days). If you have a large house or extensions, additional radon detectors may be necessary.
If your levels of the radioactive gas are over the action level or the recommended target level of 100 Bq-m3, we highly recommend you contact us. We can provide sound advice based on almost 40 years collective experience on combating high radon levels as well as installation of the most effective radon mitigation equipment for your home. According to the UK government,acceptable (or target) radon levels are anything lower than 100 Bq-m³. If levels in your home are between target and action level, it is recommended that you take steps to reduce levels of radon. It is even more important to reduce levels if there is a smoker or ex-smoker living in your home.
Your risk of contracting lung cancer if your home has radon levels above the action level of 200 Bq-m³ and you are a smoker is 25 times greater than a non smoker.
According to official literature from the US and Canada about radon, a safe level of the harmful gas is actually zero. There are no safe radon levels. Any exposure to the gas, no matter how small, can cause damage to the DNA in your lung, the lower the levels found in your home, the lower the risk you have of developing lung cancer.
You can access an indicative, interactive radon map developed by Public Health England and The British Geological Survey to check how prevalent radon gas is in your area. We must stress however the radon map is only indicative, we carry out radon remediation works across the UK regardless of the radon map. Many buildings in Norfolk and Suffolk have revealed high levels of radon gas. If your building has a basement, regardless of your location, you should carry out a radon test. Extremely high levels of radon gas can be found in basements anywhere in the UK.
Radon is the primary cause of lung cancer in people who have never smoked. This should be warning enough to check levels of the gas within your home.
Radon In The Workplace
Under the Health and Safety at Work etc Act 1974, employers must, so far as is reasonably practicable, ensure the health and safety of employees and others who have access to their work environment. The Management of Health and Safety at Work Regulations 1999 also require the assessment of Radon as a health and safety risk.
The Ionising Radiations Regulations 1999 (IRR99) come into effect where radon is present above the defined level of 400 Bq/m3 and employers are required to take action to restrict resulting exposures. The HSE and Local Authorities are responsible for enforcing these regulations in particular types of workplace.
In conclusion, there are no safe levels of radon, regular monitoring and the installation of products such as a Radvac Remedial System can vastly reduce levels of the harmful gas in your home and workplace. In turn, your risk of developing lung cancer will be dramatically reduced.