January is Radon Action Month
Because of its odorless, tasteless and colorless ways, radon can be a silent killer and unfortunately, it’s fairly prevalent in Kansas soils. The radioactive gas that occurs naturally in some soils is the number one cause of lung cancer in non-smokers.
Radon claims the lives of about 21,000 Americans every year, according to the EPA. But there are ways to test for it and mitigate it. To help raise awareness and encourage people to have their homes tested, the EPA has deemed January as National Radon Action Month.
The Kansas Radon Program encourages all homeowners to test for radon. Test kits can be obtained from your Meadowlark Extension District offices located in Seneca, Holton or Oskaloosa. These kits include the testing kit, information to send off for the lab analysis and return postage. Currently, the cost of radon kits is $6, but once our stock is used up the cost will go up.
More than 112,000 radon measurements have been reported in Kansas, according to the Kansas Department of Health and Environment. The agency indicated that the statewide average indoor radon level in Kansas is 4.9 picocuries of radon per liter (pCi/L), which is above the EPA threshold of 4.0.
For homeowners who test and find elevated radon levels in their homes, the most common technique to reduce it is called Active Soil Depressurization. An ASD mitigation system is a permanently-installed pipe-and-fan system that places a direct constant vacuum on the soil beneath the home’s foundation, so the amount of radon that can penetrate into the living space is reduced.
More information about radon, testing and mitigation is available at kansasradonprogram.org/home or by calling the Kansas Radon Hotline at 1-800-693-5343. For more information, please contact Cindy Williams, [email protected], or by calling 785-863-2212.