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Radon Action Month Underway

By Staff | Jan 20, 2011

January is “Radon Action Month” in Iowa.

“It is simple to test your home for a possible health hazard that can lead to lung cancer,” says Rick Welke, Iowa Department of Public Health Radon program manager.

Radon is an odorless, colorless, tasteless gas that causes no immediate health symptoms but long-term exposure can cause lung cancer. It comes from the breakdown of uranium in the soil. Simple test kits can reveal the amount of radon in any building.

Palo Alto County Environmental Health, in conjunction with Palo Alto County Community Health, recommends testing in all homes and apartments in Palo Alto County.

“The only way to know if a home or building has elevated radon levels is to test it,” said Welke. “Once detected, buildings with high levels of radon can be easily fixed with simple and affordable venting techniques.”

Radon gas decays into radioactive particles that can be trapped in your lungs when you breathe. As they break down further, lung tissue can be damaged which can lead to lung cancer. Not everyone exposed to elevated levels of radon will develop lung cancer and the amount of time between exposure and the onset of the disease may be many years. Persons who smoke or have been smokers are ten times more at risk than persons who have never smoked.

Radon gas seeps into a house from the soils around and under the home; through cracks in the foundation, flours or walls; through hollow block walls; and through openings around the floor drains, pipes and sump pumps. Radon has been detected in new and old homes and in homes with or without basements.

Radon testing is easy and inexpensive. Test kits are available through Palo Alto County Community Health, 3201 1st St., Emmetsburg, IA 50536; phone 852-5419, and also Palo Alto County Environmental Health, 2103 Main St Suite 108, Emmetsburg, IA 50536; phone 852-3058.

The $5 fee includes the test kit and the testing fee. Information about reducing Radon hazards in your home, as well as a listing of licensed measurements and mitigation specialists can be found at www.idph.state.ia.us/eh/radon.asp Additional information is available from the Radon Hotline at 800-383-5992 or online at www.RadonInIowa.com

January is “Radon Action Month” in Iowa.

“It is simple to test your home for a possible health hazard that can lead to lung cancer,” says Rick Welke, Iowa Department of Public Health Radon program manager.

Radon is an odorless, colorless, tasteless gas that causes no immediate health symptoms but long-term exposure can cause lung cancer. It comes from the breakdown of uranium in the soil. Simple test kits can reveal the amount of radon in any building.

Palo Alto County Environmental Health, in conjunction with Palo Alto County Community Health, recommends testing in all homes and apartments in Palo Alto County.

“The only way to know if a home or building has elevated radon levels is to test it,” said Welke. “Once detected, buildings with high levels of radon can be easily fixed with simple and affordable venting techniques.”

Radon gas decays into radioactive particles that can be trapped in your lungs when you breathe. As they break down further, lung tissue can be damaged which can lead to lung cancer. Not everyone exposed to elevated levels of radon will develop lung cancer and the amount of time between exposure and the onset of the disease may be many years. Persons who smoke or have been smokers are ten times more at risk than persons who have never smoked.

Radon gas seeps into a house from the soils around and under the home; through cracks in the foundation, flours or walls; through hollow block walls; and through openings around the floor drains, pipes and sump pumps. Radon has been detected in new and old homes and in homes with or without basements.

Radon testing is easy and inexpensive. Test kits are available through Palo Alto County Community Health, 3201 1st St., Emmetsburg, IA 50536; phone 852-5419, and also Palo Alto County Environmental Health, 2103 Main St Suite 108, Emmetsburg, IA 50536; phone 852-3058.

The $5 fee includes the test kit and the testing fee. Information about reducing Radon hazards in your home, as well as a listing of licensed measurements and mitigation specialists can be found at www.idph.state.ia.us/eh/radon.asp Additional information is available from the Radon Hotline at 800-383-5992 or online at www.RadonInIowa.com