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Radon in the workplace

Under the Health and safety at Work etc. Act 1974 (HSW Act) the employer bears the principal responsibility to ensure the health and safety of employees and others who have access to the working environment. Protection from exposure to radon at work is specified in the Ionising Radiations Regulations 1999 (IRR99), made under the HSW Act.


For most practical purposes application of IRR99 occurs where the average radon level, measured in the winter months when the levels are usually at their highest, exceeds 400 Bq m-3. When measurements are taken at other times of the year seasonal correction factors should be applied. Measurements can be made relatively simply and inexpensively using passive detectors.

If on measurement the building, or part of the building, is found to have an elevated radon level remedial action should be taken. In most cases remedial action will involve carrying out minor building works to reduce the radon to an acceptable level.

To assist employers, BRE have prepared a guide which describes how to measure radon levels in workplaces and the range of practical cost effective methods that are available for reducing radon levels in workplace buildings:

  • BRE Trust Report FB 41 Radon in the workplace which can be purchased from www.brebookshop.com
  • BRE offer consultancy services to building owners to assist them in establishing whether they have a radon problem, and can advise on options for reducing radon levels. These services are best suited to building owners with a portfolio of buildings or the more unusual properties. For more information please phone 01923 664500.

If you would like to speak to somebody about radon in the home please phone the Public Health England Radon Hotline on 01235 822622