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Taking Action: Radon ‘Rumors’ at Calhoun College

DECATUR, Ala. (WHNT)–WHNT News 19 received a tip from a caller late last week who claimed high levels of Radon had been detected in Wallace Hall on the Decatur campus of Calhoun Community College. The caller also claimed classes were in session while maintenance crews worked installing a ventilation system to clear out the Radon.

The caller, who remained anonymous but appeared to have insight into the situation, told a WHNT News 19 producer Calhoun faculty and staff were called into a meeting about the alleged Radon levels detected and were asked to keep quiet about the situation.

Mitigation and Health Effects of Radon

In support of National Radon Action Month 2012, Beverly Jo Carswell of Alabama’s Office of Radiation Control, Radon Program teamed up with certified radon mitigator George Brickley to educate Northern Alabama code officials. Ms. Carswell discussed the health issues associated with radon gas. Mr. Brickley provided information on the radon mitigation process and what radon codes could be adopted to reduce the radon health risk to occupants. The presentation was followed by a well-received question and answer session. Code officials asked insightful questions covering topics ranging from the electrical requirements of mitigation to the costs of running a radon fan.

Get the 411 on Radon from New Extension Toll-Free Number

Alabama residents have a new way to get the latest information on radon. The Alabama Cooperative Extension System’s radon education program is reaching out to consumers with a new toll-free number.

State radon program coordinator Pat Smith says the toll-free number will enhance people’s access to radon information.

“Our new number is 1(855) ALRADON or 1(855)257-2366,” says Smith. “People should call during regular business hours and will be able to talk with a knowledgeable professional.”
She adds the only time callers will get an automated message is during non-business hours or if staff is assisting other clients.

Callers will be able to get information on a variety of radon topics including testing and how to contact certified mitigation specialists if their home has elevated radon levels.

A Silent Killer: Video and Article

Watch the CBS 42 news segment.

There's a killer lurking in and around your home and you may not even know it. Dead bolts and window locks are no match; in fact you could be in danger right now!

That killer is Radon, a radioactive gas. It's a deadly by-product of decaying Uranium in the ground.

How deadly? Consider this; Radon is responsible for more than 20,000 lung cancer deaths every year. Claiming more lives annually than drunk driving and house fires, combined!

According to the surgeon general, Radon exposure is second only to smoking as the leading cause of lung cancer in the U.S. Scary! When you consider more people who've never touched a cigarette are developing lung cancer. According to Dr. Veena Antony for those who do smoke Radon only increases their risk of getting it.

Alabama Family Discovers How to Beat 'Radon Mountain'

Alabama Family Discovers How to Beat 'Radon Mountain'

MADISON, Al. - 291 Dublin Circle in Madison looks like a place where there's little chance of danger.

It's tucked in the curve on the north side of the street, a four-acre lot huddled among the maples.

Tom and Faye Dickerson have lived here for almost 40 years. They've been here for most of their marriage, raising three children when Jack Clift's farm nudged up to their backyard.

With the children gone, it's unnerving to the Dickersons that they raised a family in a house with such high levels of radon.

"It's the second leading cause of lung cancer after cigarette smoking," Faye Dickerson said. "As we learned more about it, we said we've got to do something about this."

Radon is a cancer-causing radioactive gas, according to radon.com. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and the Surgeon General's Office have estimated that as many as 20,000 lung cancer deaths are caused each year by radon, the website said.

Basements have elevated radon more often than slab on grade which have elevated radon more often than crawl space homes.

User photo for: Jim McNees Alabama

Back in 1987 Alabama participated in the EPA national radon survey. 789 of our participants were self select, meaning they responded to our request for volunteers. 1,299 of our participants were randomly selected for solicitation by the EPA contractor. In areas of Alabama with significant indoor radon, the occurrence of homes with radon test results greater than 4 pCi/l was about twice as great in the self select participants as in the random select participants! Twice as great a % over 4 pCi/l.

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