Published On: Fri, Jan 17th, 2014

Radon: The Silent Killer

EBCI Air Quality Program to give away free test kits

 

By AMBLE SMOKER

ONE FEATHER STAFF

 

Radon, a radioactive gas that is both odorless and colorless, could be invading the air inside your home and accumulating towards lethal levels.  This radioactive gas is the leading cause of lung cancer among people who do not smoke and second for those who do.  The United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) estimates Radon is responsible for more than 20,000 deaths from lung cancer annually.

Found all over the US, the radioactive gas is derived from the natural decay of uranium in soil and rock while emitting toxic vapors into the atmosphere, severely diminishing the quality of air you breathe. The lung-cancer causing agent is found in every type of building without discrimination between new or old and most commonly found in homes, offices and schools. Without detection and proper prevention efforts, Radon levels can accumulate to unsafe levels with harsh consequences.

Katie Tiger, EBCI Air Quality Program states, “Many areas in North Carolina have been identified to have elevated levels of radon, especially in the mountains and piedmont regions. In fact, radon levels can vary from home to home.  Even homes next door to each other can have very different radon levels.”

Amy Smoker adds, “Radon levels are highly site specific and the only way to know the radon level in home is to do a radon test.”

Although radon poses a very serious health risk, it can be easily reduced and is very cost-effective to do so.  The Air Quality Program recommends all homes should be tested for radon gas, whether they are new or old.  Testing is easy and the only sure way to determine if your family is at risk for radon.  If your house has a radon problem, it can be fixed and will greatly reduce the risk of lung cancer for you and your family.

The EBCI Air Quality Program will be giving away free Radon Test Kits to anyone who resides on EBCI land.  The test kits only take a few minutes to set up and will run for 3-7 days.  They can be picked up on the following days and locations

  • Tuesday, Jan. 28 from 10:30-11:30am at the Cherokee County Senior Center
  • Wednesday, Jan. 29 from 10:30-11:30am at the Snowbird Senior Center
  • Thursday, Jan. 30 from 10:30-11:30am at Tsali Manor and from 2-4pm in the Ginger Lynn Welch Community Room

For more information, contact EBCI Air Quality Program: Katie Tiger, environmental specialist, 554-6115, katerenw@nc-cherokee.com or Amy Smoker, environmental technician, 554-6114, amysmok@nc-cherokee.com

 

 

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