Radon gas — a leading cause of cancer: January is National Radon Action Month

Staff Report

The World Health Organization and Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) have announced a call to action for Americans to test their homes for radon gas, which has recently been identified as the leading cause of lung cancer for non-smokers in the U.S.

The EPA has officially designated January 2012 to be National Radon Action Month in the United States. The press, local health departments, and the media are encouraged to help save lives in 2012 by promoting this last week of National Radon Action Month.

Radon is a naturally-occurring, radioactive gas that seeps out of the ground and can enter homes and other buildings. Since radon is invisible and odorless, the only way to know if a home has dangerous levels of the gas is to conduct a radon test. Radon problems have been found in every county in the U.S., so the surgeon general is recommending that all homes are tested,

The Environmental Protection Agency estimates that as many as 8 million homes in the United States currently have dangerous levels of radon gas. They also predict that if action is not taken to correct this problem, between 15,000 and 22,000 deaths will occur in 2012 from exposure to the gas. This is a health threat of epidemic proportions that needs immediate attention.

Radon causes more deaths each year in the U.S. than any other in-home hazard, including fires and carbon monoxide deaths combined. We can save lives by stopping America’s leading in-home killer. For more information, visit The National Radon Month website, www.RadonMonth.org.

From the Jan. 18-24, 2012, issue

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