Radiation Profile Mapping and Health Risk Assessment due to 222RN Exposure in Durgapur Industrial Zone, India
It is well known that 222Rn is the second leading cause of lung cancer. Therefore, measuring 222Rn concentration in the environment is essential for health-related issues for the public. In the present article, the authors measured the 222Rn concentration in the environment of the densely populated Durgapur industrial zone of West Bengal, India. The authors recorded the concentration of 222Rn in the surface water and groundwater using RAD7 and Alpha GUARD Radon detector. The recorded 222Rn concentration seems to vary between 2.01±0.59(Bq/l)and 9.37±0.96 (Bq/l)in groundwater and for surface water the activity range is from 0.07±0.09(Bq/l) to 0.63±0.22(Bq/l). The authors also estimatedthe mean inhalation dose, ingestion dose, total effective dose (TED) per annum and the health risk factor (HRF) for cancer due to 222Rn exposure in the Durgapur area.The estimated TED due to 222Rnvaries between 0.9429 µSv/y and 126.21 µSv/y for the study area. These values of TED for some locations exceed the safe limit of 100 µSv/y as set by the World Health Organization [WHO] and European Union Commission [EUC]. This work is the first of its kind that invokes about 222Rn mapping and the health risk assessment of the Durgapur area. Associated contour maps of HRF were also prepared for the first time. The authors attempt to identify the high activity zone and possible health hazards due to 222Rn for the dwellers of the study area. This article also compares the recorded 222Rn activity of the Durgapur zone with that of the geothermal zone, where 222Rn activities are apparently high. The authors recommended banning the source of groundwater where the 222Rn activity is high to diminish the risk of cancer. The author suggested useful techniques to reduce radon from water bodies and buildings and huts to protect people from the health hazards caused by high radon flux. This study will help industrialists, government agencies and public health departments.
Keywords - Radon-222, Durgapur Industrial Zone, Radioactivity in Water, Health Risk Factor, Radiation Profile Mapping.