Jim Vanderwal recently moved to Vernon where as many as one in every four homes has a radon problem, according to the B.C. Lung Association.
A senior program manager for the Fraser Basin Council, a non-profit focused on climate change and air quality issues, Vanderwal knew about the lung cancer risks of indoor radon, but still had questions, including where to buy a home test kit.
The second leading cause of lung cancer after smoking, radon is a radioactive gas emitted by uranium deposits in the earth. It finds its way into homes through foundations cracks and around unsealed pipes or crawl spaces and if not properly ventilated, can accumulate inside to unhealthy levels.
The only way to know if your home has a problem is to test.
“Being able to talk to someone about the issue at the B.C. Lung Association was really helpful,” said Vanderwal.
“And it turns out the B.C. Lung Association sells radon test kits online at their RadonAware website.”
Vanderwal and his wife are currently in the process of testing their home right now.
“If it turns out our home’s radon levels exceed Health Canada safety guidelines, we’ll take the necessary steps,” he said.
“We plan to stay in our house for a long time, and it’s important to us that we raise our kids in a safe and healthy environment.”
For the past three years, the B.C. Lung Association’s RadonAware Team has partnered with communities to educate residents about the risk of radon.
“While we encourage everyone to test for radon, we really want to emphasize the importance of testing in high-risk communities, such as Vernon,” said Britt Swoveland, RadonAware manager.
For more information about radon, visitwww.radonaware.ca or call 1-800-665-5864.