GALION -- January is Radon Action Month and Crawford County Public Health is trying to remind people the importance of testing their homes for radon. Radon is the second-leading cause of cancer in the US and the top cause of cancer in non-smokers.
All of Crawford County is a high risk area for elevated radon levels, according to Kate Siefert, Health Commissioner Crawford County Public Health.
“Radon exposure risks and the link to lung cancer are often overlooked by homeowners since it is both colorless and odorless," Siefert said. "We can see and smell cigarette smoke inside of a home making it easy for us to connect second-hand smoke to lung cancer. But since Radon is essentially invisible, we forget that it is the leading cause of lung cancer in non-smokers.
"The only way you can know if Radon is being trapped inside your home is by testing for it. It is a quick and easy procedure that you can do by yourself. Your Radon test results are not shared with anyone – you are simply doing it for the benefit of your health.”
Siefert suggests residents should test their homes for radon during “Radon Action Month” with a free radon test kit.
“When I bought my home in Crawford County in 2002, one of the first things I did was to test my indoor levels of Radon," Siefert said. "It was very simple to do and it provided the peace of mind of knowing whether or not my family and I are at increased risk of lung cancer.
"Fortunately, my levels were low. But two of my neighbors have also tested their homes and both were very high. They have both installed mitigation systems to lower their levels and reduce their risks of lung cancer. The risk of Radon exposure is high in all of Crawford County and it is unpredictable where those exposures are located. Your neighbors’ homes may test fine but your home may test high. That is why testing your home is so important.”
Crawford County Public Health reminds residents to test their homes for radon – it’s easy, inexpensive and could prevent you and your family from the dangerous health risks associated with high levels of radon. If you are an Ohio homeowner, you can receive a FREE radon test kit through the Ohio Department of Health.
Radon is the second leading cause of lung cancer and it is estimated to cause over 20,000 deaths each year in the United States. Radon is the second leading cause of lung cancer. If you are an Ohio homeowner, you can receive a FREE radon test kit through the Ohio Department of Health.
Radon is a naturally occurring radioactive gas produced by the breakdown of uranium in soil, rock, and water. It cannot be detected by sight, smell or taste. Because radon is a gas, it can easily drift upward through the ground to the Earth’s surface – and could enter the lowest level of a building. Exposure to high levels of radon can cause lung cancer.
Though harmful, radon is relatively easy to control. Testing is the only way to find out if radon is in your home. The Ohio Department of Health estimates that one-half of Ohio homes have radon levels above the Environmental Protection Agency’s recommended action level of 4 picoCuries/liter (4 pCi/l) of air.
To request a FREE radon test kit, visit the Crawford County Public Health website at http://crawfordhealth.org/radon and follow the easy prompts to the online registration form to receive a free test kit by mail. Alternatively, you may purchase a low-cost ($10 to $25) radon test kit from a local home improvement store.
If high levels of radon are found after testing, fix your home by finding a qualified radon service professional to install a mitigation system. A quality radon mitigation system is often able to reduce the annual average radon level to below 2 picoCuries per Liter (2pCi/L) of air.
The Ohio Department of Health offers a list of state licensed radon contractors.
Protect your health and test your home for radon. Find more information about radon and order your free radon test kit at www.crawfordhealth.org/radon.