January is Radon Action Month and is a great time for Nebraskans to test their homes. Radon is a cancer-causing gas that you can’t see, smell or taste, but may be a problem in your home.
It is the second leading cause of lung cancer (after smoking) in America. If you smoke and your home has high radon levels, your risk of having cancer is much higher. During winter, homes are closed up and can trap the deadly gas. If any radon is in your home, there is a danger to your family’s health. Radon is a health risk that is easy to fix.
Radon gas comes from the breakdown of uranium that comes up out of the ground. Some amount of uranium is found in most soil. The Four Corners District (Butler, Polk, Seward, and York Counties) has had many high level readings in all four counties. Radon can enter homes through cracks or holes in floors and walls, sump pits, and drinking water from private wells. Once trapped inside your home radon can build up to a harmful level.
Testing is the only way to know your home’s radon levels. You will not see any signs right away, and may not until after many years. High levels have been found in all states.
The best method of testing for home owners to start with is a short-term (48 – 72 hours) test kit. This is a do-it-yourself kit that is easy to use. Four Corners Health Department will be offering radon test kits at the low cost of $6.50, to homeowners in the Four Corners District.
The test kits can be picked up Jan. 8 through March 31 (as long as stock lasts) at the Four Corners Health Department in York, Seward Extension Office in Seward, Polk County Health Department in Osceola, and Butler County Health Care Center in David City.
Thanks to our community partners for joining us in this project.
If you have questions about radon, call Four Corners Health Department at 877-337-3573 or go to http://www.fourcorners.ne.gov/environmental-health#radon