Submitted by Donna Kraemer, Dunn County Health Department

MENOMONIE, WI – The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has designated January as National Radon Action Month. Living in a home with high radon levels can be dangerous for your health. Over 2,900 Wisconsin residents die from lung cancer each year, with 488 calculated to be radon-related lung cancer deaths. Because of the ways that radon and tobacco smoke damage the lungs, high radon levels are especially dangerous for people who smoke. Their risk of lung cancer is 10 times higher than non-smokers.

Radon is a radioactive gas which can leak into your home from the ground and soil beneath your home and it is common throughout Wisconsin. Radon builds up in homes over time and goes unnoticed as it can’t be seen, tasted, or smelled. Homes with radon levels of 4 pCI/L or higher should be fixed. You can fix a radon problem with the help of a licensed radon mitigation contractor by using a pipe and fan system to route radon gas from underneath your home to the outside, preventing radon from entering your home.

The only way to know if you have a radon problem is to test your home. Home radon test kits are simple and inexpensive and can help save lives.

Radon test kits are available at the Dunn County Health Department, 3001 US Hwy 12 East – Suite 032, Menomonie, WI 54751 for a reduced price of $15 through January (price includes kit and test results). Veterans and active military may purchase their kit for $10.

For more information about radon, phone the Radon Information Center at 715-232-2388 or visit epa.gov.