Galway Home Found With High Levels Of Cancer-Causing Radon Gas

Almost 2600 people tested their homes for radon gas in the latter half of 2011 with 321 recording high levels, according to new figures released today by the Radiological Protection Institute of Ireland (RPII).

The highest level found was in a home in the Castlegar area of Galway and had an average radon concentration of 3700 becquerels per cubic metre (Bq/m3) or over 18 times above the acceptable level of 200 Bq/m3. Nationally, radon is the second biggest cause of lung cancer after smoking and is directly linked to up to 200 lung cancer deaths each year.

Four homes were identified with radon levels over 2,000 Bq/m3, which is ten times above the acceptable level of 200 Bq/m3. Those homes were located in Sligo, Galway and two in Kerry. A further 24 homes had levels between four and ten times the acceptable level. These homes were located in Galway (6), Waterford (6), Kerry (4), Clare (2), Carlow (1), Donegal (1), Mayo (1), Sligo (1), Tipperary (1) and Wexford (1). Nearly 300 homes had levels up to four times the acceptable level and these were found throughout the country.

Commenting on the latest findings, David Fenton, Senior Scientist at the RPII, said: "Our research shows that Ireland has a significant radon problem and there are thousands of homes across the country with high levels of radon gas. Exposure to high radon levels causes lung cancer and many families are unknowingly living with a high risk to their health. It's really important for people to test their homes for radon as it's the only way of knowing if the occupants of the home are exposed to this cancer-causing gas."


Related Irish News Stories
Click here for the latest headlines.

16 June 2011
Radon Levels 'Amongst Highest In Europe'
A record number of homes from across the country have been identified with high levels of radon gas according to new figures released today by the Radiological Protection Institute of Ireland (RPII).
13 October 2009
Tralee Houses Found With Highest Radon In Europe
The carcinogenic gas, radon, has been found in two houses in Tralee, Co Kerry, at record high levels. The two houses have the third and fourth highest measurements ever recorded in Europe, while Tralee and Castleisland have 15 of the 20 highest recorded measurements in Ireland.
29 July 2008
Radon Levels Exceed Previous Estimates
A study by Radon experts has shown Ireland's levels of the radioactive gas are up to 9% higher than previously thought.
26 September 2008
Galway Residents Tested For Lead Poisoning
Galway residents whose tap-water has shown high levels of lead begun a series of medical tests to ensure they have not suffered from adverse effects.
17 September 2010
Radon Gas Alert For Irish Homes
Dangerous Radon gas has been found in nearly 600 Irish homes this year - the largest number since the national detection programme began.