As the turning of the seasons brings colder weather to North Carolina, and families close windows to keep warm, it is an excellent time to make plans for radon testing in your home.
Radon is the odorless, colorless gas that is the second leading cause of lung cancer in the United States. The effects upon the families it touches can be just as devastating as lung cancer caused by smoking.
January was National Radon Action Month. However, radon test kits are now available in limited supply at the Wilkes County Environmental Health Office located in Room 308 of the Wilkes County Office Building.
Each year 15,000 to 22,000 people die from lung cancer resulting from exposure to naturally occurring radon gas. Roughly 54 percent of those diagnosed with early-stage lung cancer are expected to live no more than five years after diagnosis.
The North Carolina Radon Program of the North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services educates families and homeowners about radon gas, how to test for radon gas and how to lower the radon levels within a home. Lowering the radon levels in a home lower the risk of lung cancer.
Information about testing and fixing radon problems is available through the Radon Program website www.ncradon.org.
The cost of lowering radon levels in a home averages to about $1,500. The North Carolina Radon Program sought help for families that might struggle to meet that expense. The Self Help Credit Union stepped up and created a loan program specifically for radon mitigation. A link to more information is available on the RPS web page.
Lung cancer can strike anyone, even a nonsmoker. Test your home for radon and lower your family’s risk of lung cancer. For more information visit www.ncradon.org .