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Radon in the workplace

Radon is a radioactive gas found naturally in the environment. It has no colour, no odour and no taste. It is released into the air during the natural breakdown of uranium in rocks and soil. Once released, radon breaks down into radioactive elements that can attach to dust and other substances in the air.

workers drilling in a mine

Breathing air that is contaminated with radon increases your risk of lung cancer.

Indoor air can have high levels of radon when radon from the soil and rocks around any building seeps in and builds up in enclosed spaces that are poorly ventilated.

If you work underground, such as in a subway or tunnel, you may be at high risk of radon exposure.

If you work in a mine (uranium or any other type that is underground), you may breathe in high levels of radon if there is not proper ventilation.

Canadian regulations exist that protect workers who work in mines and other underground industries. Uranium miners are protected by the Canadian Nuclear Safety Commission. And mining and other underground industries are covered by the Canadian Guidelines for the Management of Naturally Occurring Radioactive Materials.

Some provinces also have programs to test for radon in schools.

Learn more about radon, how you might be exposed to it and how you can reduce your exposure.

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