Learn how to reduce radon health risk in Nevada | SierraSun.com

Learn how to reduce radon health risk in Nevada

Staff report

January is National Radon Action Month, and University of Nevada Cooperative Extension's Radon Education Program is offering educational presentations at various locations across the state. Free test kits will also be available at the presentations.

Radon is a naturally occurring, radioactive gas that is colorless, odorless and tasteless. It comes from the ground and can accumulate in homes, raising the risk of lung cancer.

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) estimates 21,000 Americans die each year from radon-caused lung cancer, killing more people than secondhand smoke, drunk driving, falls in the home, drowning or house fires.

In Nevada, one in four homes tested show radon concentrations at or above the EPA action level. According to experts, living in a home with radon concentrations at the action level poses as much risk of developing lung cancer as smoking about half a pack of cigarettes a day.

The risk of radon-caused lung cancer can be reduced. A simple three-day test can determine if a house has a radon problem, and winter is an ideal time to test a home for radon.

If radon problems are found, they can be fixed. Find out more and get a free test kit at a presentation in your community.

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Presentations are scheduled all month long across the state, ending with a Jan. 28 event at 6 p.m. in Incline Village at the IVGID Public Works office at 1220 Sweetwater Road.

For those who cannot attend a presentation, free kits are available through Feb. 29 at University of Nevada Cooperative Extension offices and partner offices. There is one in Carson City at 2621 Northgate Lane, and one at 4955 Energy Way in Reno, along with the UNR campus.

For more information, visit the Nevada Radon Education Program website at RadonNV.com.