Testing is simple and inexpensive
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE Connecticut Department of Public Health
January 14, 2014 Contact: William Gerrish
Hartford —The state Department of Public Health (DPH) urges Connecticut residents to test their homes for radon gas, the leading cause of lung cancer in non-smokers. Health officials estimate that radon is responsible for about 21,000 lung cancer deaths each year in the United States.
Radon, a naturally occurring radioactive gas formed from the natural decay of uranium, is found in rock, soil and water. While radon in outdoor air poses a relatively low threat to human health, radon can enter homes from the surrounding soil and become a health hazard inside buildings.
“Radon is the second leading cause of lung cancer behind smoking,” stated DPH Commissioner Dr. Jewel Mullen. “Because you can’t see or smell radon, people are often unaware that this silent killer could be in their home. That’s why testing for radon and reducing elevated levels is so important, and could save your life or the lives of your loved ones.”
Dr. Mullen said all Connecticut homes should be tested for radon. Testing homes for radon is simple and inexpensive. Radon test kits are available at many hardware stores or through several local health departments. The National Radon Program Services sells radon kits through http://sosradon.org/test-kits.
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency recommends that homes with radon levels at 4.0 pCi/L or higher should be fixed. Homeowners can further reduce their potential lung cancer risk by fixing homes that are below 4 pCi/L. Smokers exposed to radon have a much higher risk for developing lung cancer.
Radon problems can be corrected by qualified radon contractors, with costs typically ranging between $1,200 and $1,500. A homeowner should hire a qualified radon mitigation (reduction) contractor to decrease airborne radon levels.
To learn more about radon and to obtain a list of qualified radon mitigation contractors, please visit the DPH Radon Program web site at www.ct.gov/dph/radon or call (860) 509-7367.