Experts are encouraging Edmonton homeowners to test for radon—a colourless and odourless gas that can cause lung cancer.

The president and CEO of The Lung Association, Leigh Allard, was shocked when she learned how high radon levels were at her Terwillegar home.

“I understood the risks to radon, but I didn’t realize how high the levels could be,” she told CTV News.

Allard’s house had more than 800 Becquerel of gas—four times the amount Health Canada deems safe.

“Panic and fear went through me,” Allard said, so she called a specialist.

“It’s a risk in every home,” Radon Gas Removal Systems Inc. Owner Bill Elms said. “What we’re finding in Edmonton, this house could be 800, the house next door is tested and it could be 50. It all depends on the fractures of the earth. The gas takes the course of least resistance.”

Dr. Aaron Goodarzi recommends the Evict Radon 90 Day Test Kit, which costs $60, to find out how much radon there is in your home.

“All they do is place the radon device in the lowest level of their home … leave it there for 90 days, approximately three months. Those should be winter heating months.”

The deadline to join the radon study is next Thursday.

Allard wants the government to create radon rebate programs, similar to those offered in the United States.

“We need to do more to protect people’s health.”

With files from CTV Edmonton’s Regan Hasegawa