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The Health & Safety Executive acknowledges that approximately 2000 people in the UK die from lung cancer linked to radon exposure each year.

It is a clear odourless radioactive gas that escapes naturally from the rock beneath the earth's surface. In some regions the concentration is worse than others but, like all forms of ionising radiation, can be deadly. This really is a case of the natural environment destroying us and not the reverse. Few people seem to be aware of the danger. Although geological maps provide some guide to the more risky areas of the UK, because of the nature of the gas high levels of radon can occur in many other parts of the UK.

HSE recognises the risk

What is Radon?

Under the Health and Safety at Work (Etc.) Act 1974, the employer bears the principal responsibility to ensure the health and safety of employees and others. Protection from exposure to radon at work is specified in the Ionising Radiations Regulations 1999

These regulations apply to work areas where the level of radon exceeds a defined threshold. One of the fundamental requirements is to reduce exposures to radiation to as low as is reasonably practicable.

Where radon levels are found in excess of 400 Bq m-3 in the workplace, then the first approach should be to apply remedial measures to the building(s) to reduce radon levels to as low as is reasonably achievable.

Responsibilities for employers

Radon in the workplace

Guide for employers