Radon, a radioactive gas that occurs naturally in most soil, is the second-leading cause of lung cancer and the number-one cause among non-smokers. It is responsible for more than 20,000 lung cancer deaths in the U.S. each year, according to U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) estimates.
January is National Radon Action Month, and the Indiana State Department of Health (ISDH) is urging homeowners to test their homes for radon because this tasteless, colorless and odorless gas can build up in homes without residents’ knowledge.
ISDH and the American Lung Association are partnering to provide county health departments throughout Indiana with free radon test kits to distribute to individuals in their communities. A list of local health departments can be found on the ISDH website. Residents also can purchase an inexpensive kit from most home improvement and hardware stores and through some online retailers.
If high levels of radon are detected, licensed contractors can install mitigation systems to eliminate the problem and protect occupants of the home.
To learn more about radon, visit the ISDH’s radon page at http://www.in.gov/isdh/24346.htm and the EPA’s “Citizen’s Guide to Radon” at https://www.epa.gov/radon/publications-about-radon.