Governor Tony Evers and the Wisconsin Department of Health Services (DHS) are urging Wisconsinites to test their homes for radon exposure. Radon is an odorless and radioactive gas. It is present in the ground and can enter buildings through its foundations. According to DHS, about 1 out of 10 homes in Wisconsin has high radon levels.
Governor Evers has declared the month of January National Radon Action Month for Wisconsin residents.
“About one out of every ten homes in Wisconsin has high radon levels. Any home, whether old, new, with or without a basement can have radon,” said Gov. Tony Evers. “Since you cannot smell, taste, or see radon, the only way to know if you have high radon levels is to test for it. Test kits are available to help protect you and your family from radon exposure.”
Radon concentrations can be measured with a test kit. These kits are available at hardware stores and local public health agencies. Reduced-cost test kits are available through Radon Information Centers in Wisconsin and test kit promotions are happening throughout the month of January.
In addition, more than 100 radon mitigation contractors in Wisconsin are nationally certified to install radon mitigation systems if elevated radon levels are found in a house or building. Newly constructed homes should include features recommended by the National Association of Home Builders to reduce radon entry.
A Leading Cause of Lung Cancer
Radon exposure is the second leading cause of lung cancer overall and the leading cause of lung cancer for non-smokers according to DHS. The most important thing someone can do is test their home. Radon causes more lung cancer among non-smokers than second-hand tobacco smoke does to smokers. According to U.S. Environmental Protection, an estimated 21,000 lung cancer deaths per year occur among non-smokers due to radon.
Learn more about Radon’s connection to cancer by reading Radon & Your Health.
This short video, produced by DHS and the Department of Natural Resources (DNR), simplifies just what radon is and what we can do about exposure in our homes.
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