Radon Hazard in Reno Area Homes and Businesses
Why Worry About Radon Gas?
The simple answer to that question is "Because it can kill you." Radon is a naturally-occuring odorless, colorless, and tasteless radioactive gas, produced by the breakdown of uranium in soil, rock, and water. If it enters buildings, it can become concentrated enough to be a health hazard. You won't even know you are being exposed unless you test for its presence in your home. Other buildings can have elevated radon levels as well.
Radon exposure can cause lung cancer. According to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), around 21,000 people in the United States die each year from radon-caused lung cancer (second only to smoking). That's more people than die from exposure to secondhand smoke, drunk driving, falls in the home, drowning, or house fires.
Because of the geology here (lots of granite), people living in the Reno region are at a high risk for radon exposure. Fortunately, it is cheap and easy to test for radon in your home. If a problem is detected, mitigation measures can be taken to keep this silent killer outside where it is harmlessly dispersed. Check this Nevada Statewide Radon Potential map and you'll see that Reno and much of the surrounding area are among the highest risk zones. Statewide, one in four homes tested show radon concentrations at or above the EPA action level.
January is Radon Action Month
Lung cancer from radon exposure is preventable. The University of Nevada Cooperative Extension "Nevada Radon Education Program" is available to help educate the public about the radon exposure hazard. Free home radon test kits are available from a variety of sources. Should testing find unhealthy levels of radon, the situation can be fixed.
Where to get free Radon Test Kits
Test kits are available at county extension offices and partner locations. Long-term test kits are also available at locations designated with *. Test kits are free to Nevada residents from January through February at extension and partner locations.
More Information About Radon in the Reno Area
Become better informed about radon by following these links and visiting the Nevada Radon Education Program website. Find out if radon is a hazard in your home and learn how to reduce the risk if it is.
The Nevada Radon Education Program is a program of University of Nevada Cooperative Extension and is funded by the Nevada Division of Public and Behavioral Health. More than 23,000 Nevada homes have been tested since the program began in 2007.
Source: Nevada Radon Education Program.
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