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Radon Action Month good time to test your home

13 January 2018, 01:08 | Franklin Nunez

Radon test kits available

State offers free radon test kits

Over the course of several years, constant exposure to radon increases a person's risk for lung cancer. Long-term exposure can lead to lung cancer and is the second leading cause of lung cancer overall. "You can not see or smell radon".

"Winter is simply a better time to test for radon because your house is more closed up than it is in the summer", Ridella said. "Since you can't see or smell radon, people tend to forget the health effects that radon can have", says Meghan Williams, Environmental Health Specialist for Lincoln County Health Department.

The Department of Health Services estimates that one out of 10 homes in Wisconsin have high radon levels.

"Radon is a naturally occurring gas and it's created by the uranium that you would find from the soil, so uranium is normally associated with mountains which is why some states like Colorado would be considered to have more radon", explained Colby Adams, who is the environmental health director for the Idaho Department of Health and Welfare's Division of Public Health. There is no safe level for radon, but the EPA and U.S. Surgeon General recommend fixing homes that have levels at or above 4pCi/L (picocurie per liter). The EPA and the USA surgeon general urge all Americans to protect their health by testing their homes, schools and other buildings for radon.

"Soil that's kind of in the Redlands is kind of a shale soil and they're usually higher levels in that type of soil versus the granite in the Mesa". Prolonged exposure to radon is responsible for 505 deaths annually in Colorado, according to the Colorado Department of Health and Environment.

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Radon mitigation professionals are trained to reduce radon in homes using ventilation and depressurization systems and other techniques. Logan County has an average radon level of 4.4 pCi/L. If high levels of radon are detected, licensed contractors can install mitigation systems to eliminate the problem and protect you and your family.

Governor John Hickenlooper has declared January Radon Action Month in Colorado.

To get a free test kit, homeowners can log onto www.uchd.net/radon. "We encourage everyone to test their homes because levels can vary drastically from home to home".

After leaving the opened kit in the room for the recommended amount of monitoring time, send it to the laboratory for analysis.

The Extension Office has partnered with San Juan Basin Public Health to present several community meetings to discuss radon.



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