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Hazardous levels of ground gas result from man-made structures, such as building foundations, interrupting the natural processes of the earth. Dangers associated with these gasses range from immediate dangers such as asphyxiation to serious diseases such as lung cancer caused by long-term exposure.
When people in the property business refer to ground gas they are predominately referring to radon, methane, carbon dioxide and VOCs (Volatile Organic Compounds). These are by no means the only gasses that the ground releases into our atmosphere, but they are the ones that pose a serious risk to human health if they are allowed to build up in properties.
Radon gets a lot of press coverage due its links with serious illnesses like lung cancer. Like most ground gas, radon is normally so disparate in the atmosphere that it is harmless. However, in high concentrated volumes it can be hazardous to human health.
Radon is not the only harmful gas that can penetrate a property from the ground. The following gasses also pose unique problems for properties.
High levels of carbon dioxide are often found in land that has been used for landfill, industrial sites or coalfields. Carbon dioxide is extremely dangerous as it is a colourless and odourless gas that can cause asphyxiation when present in high levels.
Methane is a dangerous because it is explosive and can ignite at levels as low as 5%. Methane will build up in properties that are nearby or build upon land previously used for sewage treatment, landfill and mining. Peat bogs are also a common source of this gas.
Hydrocarbons can be highly toxic, carcinogenic and flammable. They are nortmally a product of the petrochemical industry and as such are prevalent in post-industrial sites and areas that have been home to abandonded petrol stations.
Volatile Organic Compounds (VOC’s) is a generic term for any organic compounds that are volatile under normal conditions. Although they are often gasses, they can also be solid or liquid.
The most common problematic VOCs are Benzene, Toluene, Chlorinated Solvents and Ethers.
Because ground gasses pose serious danger to people, building regulations are very clear that proper precautions are taken to prevent danger to health and safety when building on land affected by ground gas. This has not always been the case though, so homes and commercial premises do exist where no preventative measures have been taken to protect against ground gas.
Wise Basement Systems have gas ventilation and gas membrane that can be applied to both construction projects and retro-fitted into properties that already exist and have excess levels of ground gas.
Gas membranes provide an airtight barrier to potentially hazardous ground gas. They can be installed into existing properties and construction sites.Gase Membranes
Gas ventilation systems filter harmful ground gasses such as radon, methane and CO2 away from your property leaving any occupants safe.Gas ventilation
For help and assistance in selecting the most appropriate ground gas solution for your property or construction project, contact the expert team at Wise Basement Systems on 0808 256 4538 or contact us online using our contact form.
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