Radon is a radioactive gas that forms naturally when uranium, thorium, or radium – which are radioactive metals – break down in rocks, soil, and groundwater.
In South Africa, there was previously not significant control over radioactive materials in mining waste and slime.
After a century of gold mining in South Africa, with the addition of uranium mining in recent decades, radon levels in some areas are expected to be high.
The dangers of high radon levels
When a person breathes in radon the radioactive particles from the gas can get trapped in their lungs, which increases the risk of lung cancer over time.
Note by EMFSA – see: