Gas alert at five Sheffield schools

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RADIOACTIVE gas has been detected on the premises at five Sheffield primary schools.

Radon gas has been found at Birley Primary, Birley Spa Primary, Ecclesall Infants, Totley Primary and Westways Primary in Crookes.

Work is to take place at all five schools in seven weeks’ time, when the children break up for the October half term holidays.

Radon is a colourless, odourless, radioactive gas, which is formed by the radioactive decay of small amounts of uranium that occur naturally in all rocks and soils.

Any exposure to radiation is thought to be a health risk, and radiation can increase the risk of cancer, but where radon levels are low the risk to health is small.

Today Sheffield Council, and the schools’ headteachers, reassured parents there is ‘no need for concern’.

A council spokeswoman said: “Radon is present in all buildings, including homes, and is breathed in by everyone. People have been exposed to radon for as long as we have lived indoors.”

* See The Star tomorrow for the full story and parents’ reaction.