CR3 News Magazine 2018 February: Black History Special Edition - Page 43

Strydom further explained that most granites contained uranium, which was the radioactive "mother" of radon. He said radon atoms were formed in the granite rock and diffused through the rock material to the surface.

"If the granite is dense and unfractured, the radon atoms decay before they can reach the surface and are not emitted. Therefore, some kitchen tops may emit radon, but the resulting levels of radon in the house depend on many factors, mostly ventilation, and cannot simply be determined by radon gas measurement.

"It is possible to predict levels, but this is a complex exercise of radio analysis and mathematical modeling," he added.

How can people test for radon in their homes?

Testing is the only way to know if a person's home has elevated radon levels, said Professor Herbst.

"Short-term detectors measure radon levels for 2 days to 90 days, depending on the device. Long-term tests determine the average concentration for more than 90 days.”

Herbst said, since radon levels could vary from day to day and month to month, a long-term test was a better indicator of the average radon level. "Both tests are relatively easy to use and inexpensive."

Strydom indicated that radon levels in homes could easily be measured by using a Passive Radon Gas Monitor from PARC RGM.

He said this comprised a plastic dome-like device which was exposed in the home for a period of one to two months. After exposure, the device was dispatched back to the company who then performed a read-out of the radon concentration and provides a report.

Health24 has been informed that a committee, made up of the NNR, Medical Research Council, the University of Witwatersrand and Parc RGM, is looking into a study where 2000 homes in mining towns in South Africa will be tested for Radon exposure.

Would you like your home to be tested for Radon?

Health24 ordered radon testing kits and randomly tested houses across Cape Town, as well as their workplace. Results were only available for 3 – 4 months. Sign up for our Daily Dose newsletter to receive alerts when these articles are published.

The information in this article has been reviewed by biochemist turned occupational toxicologist, Dr Puleng Matatiele who is with the National Institute for Occupational Health.

Written by: Adiel Ismail 24 February 2016

... THE WAR ON RADON-INDUCED LUNG CANCER continued from pg. 5.

When preparing for action, be personal, powerful and persuasive. Tell the stories of those individuals whose lives have been changed or lost because of this silent demon invading their bodies or taking the lives of their loved one. Increase your troops to help spread the message of the danger of living, working, or attending school in environments with elevated levels of radioactive radon gas by using effective, convincing methods and repeating the endeavors that work. This war continues yet today. Take your first step today by testing your indoor environments and educating yourself and others about this little-known killer.

Don’t quit, win the war and help save lives.

Gloria Linnertz, Director

Citizens for Radioactive Radon Reduction

... continued from previous page.