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Free Radon Kits Available

CHARLEVOIX – The Health Department of Northwest Michigan will offer free radon test kits the week of Jan. 29-Feb. 2 to encourage testing in conjunction with National Radon Action Month.

Free test kits — which include the testing device, along with postage to send the device to a laboratory for laboratory analysis and report — are available at health department offices in Bellaire, Charlevoix, Harbor Springs and Gaylord. Those interested in receiving a kit will need to bring their tax identification number with them to obtain one from the health department. Kits are also available from some hardware stores and home improvement centers — but since these don't always include postage and analysis, the health department recommends reading the packaging carefully.

Ionia County Gives out Radon Test Kits in Exchange for Food Donations

Ionia County Gives out Radon Test Kits in Exchange for Food Donations

IONIA COUNTY - The Ionia County Health Department is offering free radon test kits during the next three months to people who donate a non-perishable food item that will help local families.

Radon, an odorless gas, is the second leading cause of lung cancer in the U.S. and the leading cause of the disease among non-smokers. In Michigan, one in eight homes is expected to have an elevated indoor radon level.

This radioactive gas can get trapped under a home and later drawn in through openings in the foundation floor or walls. Exposure over time increases the risk of long-term illnesses

Test kits are available at the health department, 175 E. Adams St. or the office can be reached by calling 616-527-5341.

Kits are also sold at local hardware stores and other retailers.

Federal Government Addresses Radon Gas Concerns

Federal Government Addresses Radon Gas Concerns

Watch a news segment.

MARQUETTE, Michigan -- Marquette County is a known hot spot for radon, and a new federal program may help residents keep themselves safe from the deadly gas.

The federal Radon Action Plan is an agency cooperation between federal entities such as the EPA, the Department of Agriculture and the Department of Defense. The collaboration will emphasize the importance of testing for radon, provide policy and incentive to encourage those with the means to test and mitigate, and build demand for professional services.

Here in the U.P., that could mean federal funding to test homes and protect residents.

"The significance of this new program is that for the first time, multiple federal agencies have come together to attack radon collectively," said Marquette County Health Officer Fred Benzie.

Radon is the number one cause of lung cancer in non-smokers.

Michigan Students Earn Top Honors in Science Fair

Michigan Students Earn Top Honors in Science Fair

GENESEE COUNTY, Michigan — Just one top prize would have been nice.

After 54 years of finding the area’s best young scientists, the Flint Regional Science Fair never had one of its participants bring home a first-place or best-in-category award from the international competition.

Not anymore.

Two of the five Genesee County-area students who participated in the Intel International Science and Engineering Fair in Los Angeles this month each brought home the two highest honors for their categories: first place and best in category.

Matthew Bauerle, a home-schooled 11th-grader from Oceola Township in Livingston County, and Nithin Tumma, a 17-year-old Port Huron Northern High School student, won the awards at what is dubbed the world’s largest high school science research competition.

Only twice in the competition’s history have two students from the same regional fair won the best-in-category award, fair officials said.

High Radon Levels Persisted in Basement Where Ann Arbor Police Officers Worked, Records Show

High Radon Levels Persisted in Basement Where Ann Arbor Police Officers Worked, Records Show

Radon levels far above amounts posing cancer risks plagued the basement of Ann Arbor's city hall where police officers worked for many years, city records show.

Top city officials were aware of the problems, reports show, but measures taken — including a mitigation system installed in the 1990s — failed to keep radon below federal safety levels, and it wasn't until 2009 that the city moved employees out of the basement.

Members of the police officers union believe there may be a link between the radon in the air they breathed in the basement offices and health issues experienced by several officers, including two recent deaths.

Radon Month Boosts Food Pantries

GLADWIN COUNTY -- Radon Awareness Month came to an end as we moved into February, but it ended on a high note as plenty of food items came in from the public.

During the month of January, Central Michigan District Health Department offered radon test kits to the public for $5 each or free with a non-perishable food donation. Soups, vegetables, evaporated milk, baby foods, beans, pasta, and macaroni and cheese seemed to be the most popular donations this year.

To view this article, visit http://www.gladwinmi.com/articles/2011/03/08/business/doc4d7690666c9a8779153122.txt.