November is Take Action on Radon Month
Odourless and colourless: Radon exposure is hard to detect.
Port Hope, ON (November 1, 2023) – November is Radon Awareness Month, and the Haliburton, Kawartha, Pine Ridge District Health Unit (HKPR District Health Unit) is gearing up to raise awareness about the dangers of radon gas exposure. Radon is an odourless and colourless radioactive gas that contributes to over 3,200 Canadian deaths annually.
Radon is a naturally occurring gas that is released from the ground. When it escapes into outdoor air, the concentrations are low. But radon can also get into our homes where they are in contact with the soil. In some homes, radon can build to levels that are unsafe for health. Over time, exposure to elevated levels of radon can lead to the development of lung cancer. Radon is the leading cause of lung cancer in non-smokers, and greatly increases the risk of lung cancer for people who smoke.
The only way to know what the radon levels are in your home is to do a test. It doesn’t matter whether your home is old or new, small, or large, or what the levels are in your neighbour’s home. The Government of Canada recommends that anyone whose home has radon levels more than 200 Bq/m3 (becquerels per cubic meter) take action to lower their radon level.
“It’s important to know your home’s radon level,” says Sue Shikaze, Health Promoter with the HKPR District Health Unit. “Testing your home is simple. Radon test kits can be purchased from a hardware store and are left in place for 91 days or more. Testing is an important step towards protecting the health of your family. Winter is a good time to test because we keep our doors and windows closed, so we can get an accurate measure of indoor radon levels.”
Before doing a full radon test, a preliminary test can be done using a digital radon monitor. Public libraries in Haliburton County and Trent Hills are participating in a national program that provides monitors for loan. All you need is your library card to borrow one!
Radon Awareness Month is an important reminder that action today will protect health in the future. Testing your home is an important first step to creating a healthier living environment for your family. For more information and resources on radon, visit takeactiononradon.ca.
Ashley Beaulac, Manager of Communication Services, HKPR District Health Unit, 1-866-888-4577 ext. 1212, email@example.com or Sue Shikaze Health Promoter, HKPR District Health Unit, 1-866-888-4577, ext. 1324, firstname.lastname@example.org.
About the Haliburton, Kawartha Pine Ridge District Health Unit
The Haliburton, Kawartha, Pine Ridge District Health Unit provides important public health programs and services to residents in Northumberland County, Haliburton County, and the City of Kawartha Lakes. Our dedicated team of public health professionals, led by our Medical Officer of Health, promote healthy living, protect against disease, and prevent illness and injury. We work with health care providers and community partners to address emerging health issues, service gaps and social inequities to support residents in being well and reaching their full potential. Our values of trust, engagement, accountability, and leadership guide what we do every day. Learn more at www.hkpr.on.ca.