Photo by Whitehorse Star
Photo by Whitehorse Star
The Yukon Lung Association is set to soon make an announcement that would see more radon kits made available to those on a lengthy waiting list for one.
A total of 450 of the kits were gone in just two hours last Friday, when the association and the Yukon Housing Corp. made them available for free at Home Hardware in Whitehorse. Another 250 were distributed to the communities.
A waiting list of 550 people was compiled of those who want a kit but were unable to get one.
Association president Doug MacLean said this morning plans were to hand out the free kits over a two-day period.
Last year, a similar campaign was held, with 400 devices handed out at the housing corporation’s offices as part of Radon Awareness Month.
Radon is a colourless, odourless, radioactive and naturally occurring gas.
“The amount of radon gas in the open air is very small and it does not pose a health risk,” notes information on the Yukon Housing website.
“However, in some confined spaces like basements, crawl-spaces and underground mines, radon gas can accumulate to higher levels and become a health hazard.”
It’s the second-leading cause of lung cancer in the country.
“This is dependent upon the concentration of radon gas and the length of time (years) a person is exposed,” notes the Yukon Housing site.
“Smokers have been found to be more at risk to developing cancer in relation to long-term radon exposure.”
The radon kits measure the level of the gas in the air to determine if mitigation measures are needed.
MacLean noted greater publicity around the kit give-away, as well as having them available at Home Hardware, likely made a difference in the demand.
He went on to praise the store for partnering in the initiative by providing the space for the promotion.
Store manager Amica Sturdy said Monday it was easy to say yes to provide a venue for a promotion that can have a positive impact on Yukoners’ health.
“We wanted to support that initiative,” she said.
Most who took home the kit had come in specifically for it.
However, a few people happened to be doing some shopping at the time and decided to pick up a kit as well, Sturdy said.
MacLean said an announcement will soon be forthcoming to let those on the list know where and when they can pick up a kit as more become available.
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