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Learn About the Radon Health Risk in Pershing County

Posted 12/11/2009

January is National Radon Action Month and University of Nevada Cooperative Extension’s Radon Education Program is offering a radon presentation on Jan. 28, at 6 p.m., at Pershing County Community Center, 820 Sixth St., in Lovelock. Included in the presentation will be information about radon, the health risk associated with radon, and results of area testing.

Elevated radon levels have been found in 60.7 percent of the homes tested in Pershing County.

Radon is a naturally occurring, invisible, odorless and tasteless gas that is dispersed in outdoor air but can reach harmful levels when trapped in buildings. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) estimates that radon causes more than 20,000 lung cancer deaths per year. Radon is the second-leading cause of lung cancer in the U.S. after smoking and the leading cause of lung cancer among nonsmokers.

“It is a serious health risk that is preventable and fixable,” said UNCE Extension Educator Steve Foster. “People need to take radon more seriously and be aware of the health effects and the possibility that there might be a dangerous gas in their homes.” Foster urged area residents to take steps during National Radon Action Month by testing their homes for radon. Simple and free radon test kits can be obtained at the public meeting.

“Test kits purchased at local hardware and home improvement stores can cost $20 or more, but our program is offering free test kits at presentations during National Radon Action Month,” Foster said. Residents can also purchase radon test kits for $5 throughout the year Pershing County Cooperative Extension, 810 Sixth St., Lovelock.

For more information on radon, radon testing and mitigation, and building new homes with radon-resistant features, call the Nevada Radon Hot Line at 1-888-RADON10, visit UNCE’s Radon Education Program Web site at www.unce.unr.edu/radon or visit EPA’s National Radon Action Month Web site at www.epa.gov/radon/nram.

The event is sponsored by UNCE’s Radon Education Program, which is working with the Nevada State Health Division and the EPA in a nationwide campaign to educate Americans about the dangers of radon exposure and to encourage them to take action to protect their homes and families.

UNCE encourages people with disabilities to participate in its programs and activities. If you anticipate needing any type of accommodation or have questions about the physical access provided, contact UNCE’s Karen Beatty-Lee at 775-273-2923 in advance of your participation or visit.

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