Radon is a naturally occurring radioactive gas, found in small amounts in all rock and soil. Radon seeps out of the ground and can collect in enclosed spaces such as buildings through floors.
Most buildings have low levels of radon that aren't a problem and if levels are high they can usually be reduced for a reasonable cost.
Health risks from radon
Exposure to long term high levels of radon is associated with an increased risk of developing lung cancer, particularly if combined with smoking cigarettes.
The Health Protection Agency advice is that:
- homes with radon levels above the Action Level of 200 becquerels per cubic metre (Bq/m3) should be reduced, preferably to below the Target Level of 100 Bq/m3
- homes with levels between the Target Level and Action Level should seriously consider reducing their radon level, especially if they are at greater risk, such as if they are or have been smokers.
Radon in West Oxfordshire
Much of the northern area of West Oxfordshire is affected by radon. There's a radon programme to identify homes with unacceptably high levels so they can be reduced. Since 1999 new homes being built are protected through building regulation requirements.
We cannot provide information on radon levels in individual properties or specific areas. For up to date data and enquiries contact UK Radon.
Testing for radon
Most buildings have low levels of radon that aren't a problem.
Visit the Public Health England website to:
- check whether you live in a radon affected area, for a small fee,
- find out how to test for Radon in your home.