parents are concerned
Lucerne school wants to air away radioactive gas for the time being
In a primary school in Hitzkirch LU, the reference value for the radioactive gas radon was slightly exceeded. The school would like to counteract this with regular airing. Some parents of the school children are still worried.
In the Hitzkirch primary school, the limit value for the radioactive noble gas radon was slightly exceeded.
It cannot be recognized by the eye or the nose – and yet it is dangerous. The radioactive noble gas radon penetrates through the earth’s surface into poorly insulated buildings and can cause lung cancer if inhaled over a longer period of time.
A radon concentration of 378 Becquerel per cubic meter was measured in a primary school in Hitzkirch LU, which slightly exceeds the reference value of 300 Bq/m3. The school will not be cleared because of this. Classes in the affected classroom continue. But it is aired regularly.
Some parents of the affected school children are worried “I’m really afraid for my child,” says a father to Blick. “If the value is increased, the students would have to leave the room,” he says. He’s not alone in that opinion. «On Tuesday I spoke to another father. He is no longer sending his child to school.”
There is no immediate danger
But the parents’ concerns are completely unjustified. «In the measuring range 300 to 1000 Bq/m3 Regular airing is enough as a measure, »says the school principal Urs Keller to Blick. Only from the threshold of 1000 Bq/m3 structural changes would have to be made. “The ventilation and thus the current procedure has been agreed with the department for construction, environment and economy of the municipal council,” Keller continues.
The Federal Office of Public Health (BAG) also confirms that there is no danger to the children. It is no longer necessary to teach the students in the room because “there is no immediate danger from this room,” says BAG spokesman Daniel Dauwalder to Blick. “But measures should certainly be taken to reduce the radon concentration in the classroom.” In general, it is important to keep radon levels as low as possible.
School wants to install ventilation system
Since then the federal government has lowered the threshold value for radon from 1000 to 300 Bq/m in 20173 has decreased, regular radon measurements must be carried out in schools and kindergartens. Since then, corresponding radon cases have become known in several public institutions. In June of this year, exposure to the radioactive gas was measured at almost 70 schools and kindergartens in Graubünden.
From the reference value of 300 Bq/m3 measures must be planned or initiated. In Hitzkirch, reorganization clarifications are already underway, assures school principal Urs Keller. The parts of the building that touch the ground may need to be sealed. “We hope to solve the problem in the long term with the installation of the ventilation system.” (hey)