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Emerald Group Publishing Limited
Copyright © 2009, Emerald Group Publishing Limited
Health effects of radon exposure
Article Type: Newsbriefs From: Structural Survey, Volume 27, Issue 5
Keywords: Homes, Radon, Safety
An expert advisory group of the Health Protection Agency has recommended that the Agency should consider tightening its recommended safety levels for radon gas in homes and workplaces. Radon - a naturally occurring gas – is the major source of human exposure to ionising radiation in the United Kingdom and is responsible for an estimated 1,100 lung cancer deaths a year; most of which occur in current or ex-smokers. Following an in-depth review of the latest scientific evidence, the HPA’s independent expert Advisory Group on Ionising Radiation has recommended that the Agency should place greater emphasis on reducing the UK average indoor radon concentration. The Advisory Group recommends a lowering of the radon Action Level – the point at which the Agency advises homeowners to take steps to reduce indoor concentrations of radon – from 200 Bq.m−3 to 100 Bq.m−3 in areas known to have high concentrations of radon. In addition, the Advisory Group also recommends that radon control measures in new buildings, currently required only in high radon areas, should be considered in most if not all of the UK.