November is National Radon Action Month, and the Health Unit encourages residents to consider testing their homes for radon.
Radon is a naturally occurring radioactive gas in the ground. It can’t be seen, smelled or tasted. Radon released from the ground into the air is not a concern, but in enclosed areas radon levels can build up and be harmful to health. Long-term exposure to elevated levels of radon is the second-leading cause of lung cancer after smoking.
Radon can be found all over Ontario. According to Health Canada, 11% of randomly selected homes in Huron County tested above the Canadian Guideline for radon in 2012.
“The only way to know the radon level in your home is to test for it,” says Public Health Inspector Chris Boyes. “Radon test kits are available at most major home renovation stores, or can be purchased online. Taking appropriate measures to reduce radon levels from your home could greatly benefit your health.”
Health Canada recommends homeowners do a long-term radon test, for a minimum of three months, during the fall or winter months. To get the most accurate results, the radon detector should be placed in the lowest level of the home where homeowners spend a minimum of 4 hours per day.
For more information on radon and radon testing, call the Huron County Health Unit at 1.877.837.6143 or visit huronhealthunit.ca.