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RADON TESTING APRIL - AUGUST?: 6 MONTH RADON TEST ENCOURAGED  

Thank you for your interest in testing with the Evict Radon National Study

The Evict Radon National Study is a national research study involving researchers and scientific partners from across Canada who are dedicated to solving Canada’s significant and worsening radon-gas exposure problem. Radon is a substantial cause of lung cancer even in non-smokers. By testing your home with our at-cost, research-grade radon test kits and enrolling in our national, public university-based research study, you are helping researchers from across Canada to understand radon exposure and develop new ways to protect ourselves and loved ones.

Common practice stated that winter is the optimal time to radon test. However, as we collect more data, we have determined little difference between winter and spring radon testing. We do, however, encourage our participants to test over seasonal change. At this time, the best and most accurate radon readings obtained during the spring and summer months are those that are longer than 6 months. 

Radon Research Series

Understanding radon dose exposures as a function of occupation and work trends

Radon Research Series

The COVID-19 pandemic produced widespread behaviour changes that shifted how people split their time between different environments, altering health risks including lung cancer.

Since 2020, we have been studying North American activity patterns before and after the pandemic onset and the implications this has had (and continues to have) on radioactive radon gas exposure, a leading cause of lung cancer. We have surveyed >6,000 Canadian households home to >12,000 adults and children of varied ages, gender, employment, community, and income.

While overall time spent indoors remained unchanged during the height of the pandemic response between 2020-2021, the amount of time spent in the primary residence increased from 66.4 to 77% of life (+1062h/y) after pandemic onset, increasing annual radiation doses from residential radon by 19.2% (+0.97mSv/y).

Disproportionately greater changes were experienced by younger people in newer urban or suburban properties with more occupants and/or those employed in managerial, administrative, or professional roles, excluding medicine. A large proportion of the effect was driven by telecommuting (working from home), now recognized as an increasingly normalized habit across many sectors.

In the latter pandemic stages and response exit periods between 2022-2023, activity patterns changed further, adjusting to a “new normal” which is unlikely to return to pre-pandemic levels of time split between different environments. Our work on this is ongoing, and we are currently exploring the relationship between disability status, activity patterns, and radon exposure. This work supports re-evaluating environmental health risks modified by still-changing activity patterns.

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