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Minnesota Radon Program Offers Guidance on Radon in Schools

by Margaret Henderson

In Minnesota a Radon Testing Plan requires school districts that receive health and safety revenue to conduct radon testing based on Minnesota statutes. Indoor Air Quality Management guidelines include radon issues. The Minnesota Department of Health, Indoor Environments and Radiation Section, list elements of the radon plan that include information on when and how to test, results and mitigation and reporting. Instructions are to:

· Conduct testing on school days only (not holidays, vacations or weekends), between November 1 and March 31 (short term testing method)

· Conduct testing in a manner where at least half the test duration includes days between November 1 and March 31 (long term testing method)

· Test using certified radon testing devices (per the National Radon Proficiency Program or National Radon Safety Board)

· Test all frequently-occupied rooms, especially those in contact with the ground and those above unoccupied spaces that are in contact with the ground, such as crawl spaces and tunnels.

· Perform follow up tests when results in frequently-occupied rooms are ≥ 4 pCi/L

· Take corrective measures in frequently-occupied rooms that have radon ≥ 4 pCi/L (See EPA guidelines in “Reducing Radon in Schools: A Team Approach.”)

· Re-test after corrective measures that reduce radon levels.

· Report radon test results to the Minnesota Department of Health on the School Radon Testing Form http://www.health.state.mn.us/divs/eh/indoorair/schools/schoolradonform.pdf

· Report radon test results at a school board meeting.

Additionally, the department provides a reference document, Best Practices for Radon Measurement in Minnesota Schools and Commercial Buildings http://www.health.state.mn.us/divs/eh/indoorair/schools/radontestingschools.pdf

For more information about testing for radon in schools, see http://www.health.state.mn.us/divs/eh/indoorair/schools/radonschool.html

Contact: health.indoorair@state.mn.us

Telephone 651-201-4601 or