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Testing for Radon in Schools in Vermont

by Margaret Henderson

The Vermont Department of Health Radon Program encourages testing schools for radon. Since 2005, approximately 14% of the schools that have done radon testing have had concentrations in excess of 4pCi/L, the USEPA recommended action level. Some of the schools have had as much as five times the action level. Variables unique to each school include the concentration of radon in soil and soil permeability, the type of construction of the building, and the heating and air-conditioning systems (type, operation and maintenance). Because of the impact of these variables, the department recommends testing all schools and offers free school testing.

2018 Missouri Radon Poster Contest Winners

by Margaret Henderson

Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services provides radon information to encourage testing for radon. Based on and air quality database (2005-2012), the department has reported that 48 counties have average radon levels in excess of 4pCi/L, the USEPA recommended action level. The department encourages testing by providing information and a poster contest. For instance, the department provides risk charts http://health.mo.gov/living/environment/radon/riskcharts.php to inform the public about the hazards of radon exposure.

Wisconsin Department of Health Services Announces Radon Action Month

by Margaret Henderson

In Wisconsin, approximately one out of ten homes has high levels of radon, exceeding the 4 pCi/L USEPA recommended action level. As part of the department’s public outreach and education program about radon, the department has announced Radon Action Month on its website.

The department’s interactive map of radon test results by county provides data and visual information about the prevalence of high radon levels in Wisconsin. http://wi-dhs.maps.arcgis.com/apps/webappviewer/index.html?id=68f3a3e068854810b626d002ce47aff4

Colorado’s Low Income Radon Mitigation Assistance Program

The Colorado statutes authorize the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment (CDPHE) to use designated funds for providing low income assistance for radon mitigations in support of providing safe living environments.

In its Policy and Procedure Manual for Low Income Radon Mitigation Assistance (LIRMA), contractor and homeowner eligibility specifications are defined, along with program restrictions:

  1. Funding assistance not to exceed $1,500.00 for installation of radon mitigation system and postmitigation testing. Costs exceeding $1,500.00 must be approved by the LIRMA Program.
  2. A person may not apply for assistance more than one time in a calendar year.
  3. Rental units and/or properties listed for sale are NOT eligible for this program.
  4. Homes with mitigation systems currently installed are NOT eligible for mitigation assistance funding or reimbursement under this program.

Oregon Updates Radon Risk Map

by Margaret Henderson

The Oregon Health Authority Radon Awareness Program has updated its Radon Risk Map, effective January 2018. The Program uses the interactive map to inform the public of potential hazards of radon. Encouraging testing, mitigation and radon resistance new construction are other missions of the Program. According to the Authority, there are approximately 276 radon-related lung cancer deaths each year in Oregon.

Mississippi Radon Program Offered Free Test Kits for National Radon Action Month

by Margaret Henderson

The Mississippi State Department of Health’s Indoor Radon Program (MSDH) offered free radon test kits during January 2018 to promote radon action month. In Mississippi less than 3% of the homes have radon levels in excess of the USEPA recommended action level of 4 pCi/L, but the Program notes that homes in northeast Mississippi are at higher risk of radon. During January, MSDH provided free kits to test any home for radon.

Some examples of news coverage promoting the free test kit initiative include:

Mississippi giving away radon test kits this month
The Clarion-Ledger
January 13, 2018
https://www.clarionledger.com/story/news/2018/01/13/mississippi-giving-away-radon-test-kits/1031805001/

Mississippi State Dept. of Health offering free radon test kits
January 11, 2018

Idaho Brochure Features Radon and Smoking Linkage

by Margaret Henderson

The Idaho Department of Health and Welfare has produced an on-line brochure titled “Radon and Smoking – What You Need to Know and Do to Protect Your Health.” See
http://healthandwelfare.idaho.gov/Portals/0/Health/EnvironmentalHealth/RadonSmokingBrochure.pdf

The colorful brochure displays the state map noting what counties fall into categories of radon exposure based on test results. For instance, seventeen counties are listed as having 26% to 50% of the homes tested with radon levels greater than 4 pCi/L, the recommended EPA action level.

Advice Regarding Radon in Rental Properties in Maine

by Margaret Henderson

Any home in Maine may have a radon problem, including rental properties. All parts of Maine may have elevated radon levels and test results indicate that at least 25% of the homes tested have radon problems. In Maine, landlords are required to test their rental properties. Radon testing in all residential rental properties was required by March 1, 2014, and unless a mitigation system is installed, a tenant can request a re-test every 10 years.

To guide landlords and renters, the Maine Division of Environmental Health has developed a tip sheet with the basics about “Radon in Rental Housing A Serious Hidden Danger to Family Health.”
http://www.maine.gov/dhhs/mecdc/environmental-health/rad/radon/documents/2013%20tipsheet%2011.pdf

Highlights of “About Radon Testing in Rental Housing Maine” include:

West Virginia Targets Risk Reduction for 16 Designated Counties

by Margaret Henderson

The West Virginia Department of Health and Human Resources and the American Lung Association in West Virginia are promoting radon testing, particularly in 16 designated counties: Brooke, Grant, Greenbrier, Hancock, Hardy, Marshall, Mercer, Mineral, Monongalia, Monroe, Ohio, Pendleton, Pocahontas, Preston, Summers and Tucker. Free radon test kits are offered in the outreach effort to residents of those counties. Residents of the listed counties will be able to request a free radon kit by visiting https://www.wvdhhr.org/rtia/pdf/Free%20Radon%20Kits.pdf. The outreach to the designated counties will reach 220,000 households primarily in the eastern and northern regions of the state where elevated radon levels have been found.

Colorado Activities for National Radon Month in the News

In Colorado, as many as 50% of the homes tested have exceeded the 4pCi/L recommended action level of the USEPA. The Radon Program of the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment partners with many entities in outreach efforts to encourage testing and mitigation. The following links provide news about Radon Action Month activities in Colorado throughout the state:

http://www.koaa.com/story/37216724/el-paso-county-public-health-encouraging-radon-home-testing-in-january

http://gazette.com/pikes-peak-region-residents-urged-to-test-for-radon-this-month/article/1618621