LCHD: Test homes during National Radon Action Month
For the Tomahawk Leader
LINCOLN COUNTY – The Lincoln County Health Department (LCHD) is recommending that the public test homes for radon in January as part of National Radon Action Month.
Radon causes more than 20,000 deaths each year in the United States. The colorless, odorless gas is the second-leading cause of lung cancer and the first-leading cause among non-smokers, LCHD said.
Radon is natural in soil and rock and enters buildings through cracks in basements and walls, as well as gaps around pipes.
“Both old and new buildings can have unsafe radon levels,” LCHD stated. “The Wisconsin Department of Health Services (DHS) estimates that one out of every 10 homes has high radon levels of greater than 4 pCi/L. “
“Since we live in a region with naturally high levels of radon, everyone should test their home,” said Michael Mandli, LCHD Environmental Health Specialist. “The only way to know if your home has unsafe levels is to test for it.”
LCHD noted that testing is easy, inexpensive and can be completed in a do-it-yourself fashion. Radon test kits are available for purchase at most hardware stores.
Radon levels can be lowered in any home, and new houses can be built to be radon-resistant. LCHD explained that this involves installing a system to vent the radon gas outside and get it out of the building.
“Even very high levels can be dropped to acceptable levels,” LCHD stated.
Certified contractors in Wisconsin can be found on the DHS website at www.dhs.wisconsin.gov/radon/radon-proficiency.htm.
For more information on radon, call LCHD at 715-536-0307 or the Northern Wisconsin Radon Information Center toll-free at 1-888-569-7236 (LOW- RADON).