Radon: A potential cancer-causing gas in your house
Radon is an invisible, odorless, and tasteless radioactive gas that can be harmful to you. It is the second leading cause of lung cancer in the U.S., causing more than 21,000 deaths each year. Only smoking causes more lung cancer deaths, but radon is the number one cause of lung cancer among nonsmokers.
How do you test for radon? Start with a short-term test kit. They are affordable and easy to use. For your convenience, you can buy a radon test kit for $10 (includes test instructions, analysis, and results) at your Gwinnett County Extension Office, 750 South Perry Street in Lawrenceville. You may also purchase a kit online from the University of Georgia’s Radon Program’s website, www.UGAradon.org. Kits are affordable with UGA offering each online kit purchase at $13 (includes shipping, analysis, and results). Retailers may offer kits at a different price, but the purchase price may not cover analysis or sending you the results.
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What if your neighbor’s house has a low radon level? While it may seem like you are fine if your neighbors’ houses have a low radon level, you could still be at risk. Radon levels vary from house to house, so even if your next door neighbor has a low radon level, it doesn’t mean your house has a similar level. The only way to know the radon level in your home is to test for it. It is up to you to keep your family safe from radon and its damaging effects.For more information, contact Ines Beltran, Family and Consumer Sciences Agent, at the UGA Extension Gwinnett office, 678.377.4010 or Ines.firstname.lastname@example.org or www.UGAradon.org.