Main Page Content

The Windsor-Essex County Health Unit (WECHU) began a 3-year Radon: Know Your Level study and awareness campaign in 2015. As a part of this campaign, home owners of detached and semi-detached homes were recruited to determine indoor radon levels in the areas of Windsor-Essex County (WEC). This report summarizes the findings.

 

Background

Radon is a naturally occurring, odourless and colourless gas produced by the radioactive decay of uranium. In outdoor air, radon is harmless but can accumulate indoors to high concentrations and cause an increase in lung cancer risk (Health Canada, 2014). The Government of Canada Radon Guideline recommends that if the annual average indoor radon concentration in a home’s normal occupancy area is greater than 200 Becquerel’s per cubic metre (Bq/m3) then steps are necessary to decrease the radon level (Health Canada, 2014). The Windsor-Essex County Health Unit (WECHU) began a 3-year Radon: Know Your Level study and awareness campaign in 2015. As a part of this campaign, home owners of detached and semi-detached homes were recruited to determine indoor radon levels in the areas of Windsor-Essex County (WEC).

Conclusion

  • When combining study data from all three years, 11% of homes in WEC had indoor radon levels above the Canadian guideline of 200 Bq/m³.
  • Essex County had a significantly greater proportion of homes with levels above 200 Bq/m3 (18%) compared to the City of Windsor (6%).
  • The average indoor radon level for WEC combining all 3 years of study data was 94.1 Bq/m³.
  • Amherstburg, Kingsville, Leamington and Tecumseh had average radon concentrations 12 to 26 Bq/m3 higher than WEC.
  • Newer builds (2011 or after) had the highest average indoor radon concentrations in this study1.
  • Homes with two levels (i.e. basement and main floor) had 24% and 19% higher average radon levels compared to three and four-level homes1.

Related Content