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Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2016, 13(4), 386; doi:10.3390/ijerph13040386

Children’s Exposure to Radon in Nursery and Primary Schools

LEPABE—Laboratory for Process Engineering, Environment, Biotechnology and Energy, Faculty of Engineering, University of Porto, Rua Dr. Roberto Frias, 4200-465 Porto, Portugal
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Academic Editors: Helena Solo-Gabriele and Alesia Ferguson
Received: 1 February 2016 / Revised: 21 March 2016 / Accepted: 22 March 2016 / Published: 30 March 2016
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Children’s Exposure to Environmental Contaminants)
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Abstract

The literature proves an evident association between indoor radon exposure and lung cancer, even at low doses. This study brings a new approach to the study of children’s exposure to radon by aiming to evaluate exposure to indoor radon concentrations in nursery and primary schools from two districts in Portugal (Porto and Bragança), considering different influencing factors (occupation patterns, classroom floor level, year of the buildings’ construction and soil composition of the building site), as well as the comparison with IAQ standard values for health protection. Fifteen nursery and primary schools in the Porto and Bragança districts were considered: five nursery schools for infants and twelve for pre-schoolers (seven different buildings), as well as eight primary schools. Radon measurements were performed continuously. The measured concentrations depended on the building occupation, classroom floor level and year of the buildings’ construction. Although they were in general within the Portuguese legislation for IAQ, exceedances to international standards were found. These results point out the need of assessing indoor radon concentrations not only in primary schools, but also in nursery schools, never performed in Portugal before this study. It is important to extend the study to other microenvironments like homes, and in time to estimate the annual effective dose and to assess lifetime health risks. View Full-Text
Keywords: radon; exposure; children; nursery; primary school radon; exposure; children; nursery; primary school
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MDPI and ACS Style

Branco, P.T.B.S.; Nunes, R.A.O.; Alvim-Ferraz, M.C.M.; Martins, F.G.; Sousa, S.I.V. Children’s Exposure to Radon in Nursery and Primary Schools. Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2016, 13, 386.

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