The BC Lung Association is urging Salmon Arm area homeowners to test the radon levels inside their homes.
Exposure to colourless, odourless radon gas is the leading cause of lung cancer after smoking and the Salmon Arm area is known to have elevated levels.
“Should British Columbians be concerned about radon exposure? Yes, absolutely. Should they panic? No,” said Coleman Graf, BC Lung Association Volunteer Director for the Salmon Arm area. “Virtually every house in B.C. contains some radon. The question is, how much? The only way to know for certain, is to test.”
Radon is a radioactive gas that comes from the breakdown of uranium in the ground. It can seep undetected into homes, schools, workplaces and other buildings through cracks in the walls or foundation.
“Radon exposure accounts for up to 16 per cent of lung cancers so we suggest all B.C. homeowners test their home’s radon levels,” says Carlynn Ferguson-King of the BC Lung Association.
When radon is released into the atmosphere, it gets diluted. But if it finds its way into your home it can accumulate to high levels, and that’s when it can become dangerous.
Being exposed to high doses of radon over a long period of time is a serious lung cancer risk.
For more information about radon, or to buy a test kit, visit www.radonaware.ca, or call the BC Lung Association toll-free at 1-800-665-5864.