Ballyshannon councillors call for radon levels to be tracked

Michael McHugh

Reporter:

Michael McHugh

Ballyshannon Town Council has called on Donegal County Council to check for Radon levels in Ballyshannon. This follows a story in last week’s Donegal Democrat which highlighted a 10km square grid area around Ballyshannon where deadly radon gas levels were higher than the accepted norm.

Ballyshannon Town Council has called on Donegal County Council to check for Radon levels in Ballyshannon. This follows a story in last week’s Donegal Democrat which highlighted a 10km square grid area around Ballyshannon where deadly radon gas levels were higher than the accepted norm.

In an area from Finner to north of ballyshannon 10% of homes were identified as having excess levels of radon. It’s is one of about seven area throughout the county that have been identified by the Radiological Protection Institute of Ireland (RPII), as danger areas.

At Tuesday’s monthly meeting of the council Cllr. Pat O’Malley queried whether a register of radon levels was held by Donegal County Council Cllr. Brendan Travers said that the information was available on the Institute website. He also appealed to householders to instal radon and carbon monoxide alarms in their homes, although Cllr O’Malley said he knew that new homes had radon barriers.

The Town Manager, Liam ward was not aware of any register of radon levels at county council level, neither was he sure whether there was a statutory responsibility of the County Council to have such a register.

Radon is the second biggest cause of lung cancer after smoking and is directly linked to up to 200 lung cancer deaths each year.

Scientist David Fenton, at the RPII, said last week: “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.”

If you have concerns or issues about radon levels, check out www.rpii.ie for further information.