Powell River library makes radon detection kits available

Users can take advantage of lending program free of charge

Starting this week, local residents will be able to borrow more than books at Powell River Public Library. Radon detection kits will be available at the library desk free of charge as part of a program supported by Health Canada, BC Lung Association, Simon Fraser University and Norway-based tech company Airthings.

Chief librarian Rebecca Burbank said she is thankful the library can be involved in the project and hopes it will reach many households.

article continues below

“I’m happy to be able to support the health-care community by providing access to these detection kits through the library,” she said.

Data collected will be used as part of a study at SFU to map radon levels on the North Shore and Sunshine Coast. Radon is a naturally occurring radioactive gas, caused by the breakdown of uranium rock in the environment. It can seep into poorly ventilated spaces where the gas concentrates.

Long-term exposure to high radon levels can damage the lungs and cause lung cancer. According to Health Canada, radon kills 3,200 Canadians a year and is the second leading cause of lung cancer after smoking.

The detection devices on loan are about the size of a mobile phone and have a digital display that shows readings after 24 hours, however, they need at least seven days to provide an accurate reading.

Radon detectors are recommended for people who live in dwellings that are in contact with the ground, such as single-family houses, duplexes, townhouses and basement suites. However, poorly ventilated apartment buildings and other elevated buildings have also shown high radon levels. The detector should be placed in rooms at the lowest level of the home where people spend a lot of time.

“I hope the work done by Simon Fraser University and the BC Lung Association will help to raise awareness around this hazard,” added Burbank. “Preventing cancers and increasing the health of the people in our communities helps us all live better lives.”

For more information, go to vch.ca/public-health/health-topics-a-z/topics/radon.


Copyright © Powell River Peak


NOTE: To post a comment you must have an account with at least one of the following services: Disqus, Facebook, Twitter, Google+ You may then login using your account credentials for that service. If you do not already have an account you may register a new profile with Disqus by first clicking the "Post as" button and then the link: "Don't have one? Register a new profile".

The Powell River Peak welcomes your opinions and comments. We do not allow personal attacks, offensive language or unsubstantiated allegations. We reserve the right to edit comments for length, style, legality and taste and reproduce them in print, electronic or otherwise. For further information, please contact the editor or publisher, or see our Terms and Conditions.

comments powered by Disqus


Should BC Ministry of Health provide up-to-date information in relation to the number of new and active COVID-19 cases within our region?

or  view results

COVID-19 outbreak prompts Powell River Regional Hospital District to write letters

Popular Community

Community Events Calendar