The World Health Organization (WHO) highlighted that globally between 6 and 15% of lung cancer deaths per year are caused by exposure to indoor radon, which equates to anywhere between 70,000 and 170,000 deaths worldwide every year. The Radiological Protection Institute of Ireland (RPII) estimates, 13% of lung cancer deaths in Ireland are attributable to exposure to radon. This is clearly at the upper end of the scale and reflects the high radon levels found in Irish homes. These figures were presented by Dr Hajo Zeeb, co-coordinator of the WHO’s International Radon Project at the fifth National Radon Forum in Galway. (16/11/06)
If you had a home with a strong smell of gas you would waste no time in getting out, you would call to have it professionally rectified to protect your family. You wouldn’t take the chance. Just because you can’t see, smell, taste or hear radon, you may think that you are safe. Nothing could be farther from the truth. Radon gas can lead to lung cancer. The decision of what to do about radon is a personal choice that only you can make.
At radon aware group we recommend that buildings old or new with levels below the recommended level should be re-tested every 5 years.
:Radon is a Group 1 carcinogen as is cigarette smoke.
:Radon is a colourless, odourless, tasteless radioactive gas.
:Radon accounts for over 60% of the total radiation dose received.
:Radon can cause lung cancer.
:Radon is present in all buildings.
Accidents on the road account for approximately
300 fatalities annually, while cancer of the cervix
kills around 70 women every year in Ireland. In
2003 there were 67 deaths following accidents in
the workplace. 17 deaths caused by meningitis. 195
caused by radon
To date there has been radon measurements in
approximately 30,000 Irish homes of which around
3,700 have radon concentrations above 200
Bq/m3 and 200 exceed 1,000 Bq/m3.
The highest concentration recorded in Ireland to
date is 49,000Bq/m3. To date, Ireland would have
one of the highest levels in Europe.
In some areas as many as 1 in 5 homes are above
the recommended level of 200 bq/m3.
Under the 2005 Health & Safety Act all employers
must include this in their risk assessment.
Failure to do so can result in prosecutions & fines.
Recommended radon level for a workplaces is 400 bq/m3
FACTSRadon is a Group 1 carcinogen as is cigarette smoke.
Radon In Water
There are approximately 2% of private wells in Ireland that have radon levels in excess of the safety guidelines. When radon laden water is exposed in the house the radon will migrate into the air and can then be inhaled.
SO WHAT IS BEING DONE ABOUT IT
The Radiological Protection Institute of Ireland
(RPII) has said all homes being placed for sale on
the market should be tested for radon gas and
where necessary, remediation should be included in
the mortgage approval process.
Almost 90,000 homes prior to 1998 throughout Ireland still have
radon concentrations above the recommended
levels, The Institute has made a submission to the
Law Reform Commission on the issue and has
written to all the major banks, building societies and
insurance companies urging them to protect the
interests of their clients in reducing the risks from
radon in the home.
Any physically dangerous defects in the structure of
a home are checked by the conveyancing process
and must be remedied before mortgage approval is
given. The same should apply to radon. Remediation
is relatively straightforward and inexpensive – no
one should have to live with the danger.
note* These figures do not take into account new house builds.
Radon Aware Group
"at your service"