What is Radon?
Radon is a colorless, tasteless, and odorless gas that causes lung cancer. Radon exposure is the second leading cause of lung cancer in the United States after smoking. Radon-related lung cancers result in an estimated 21,000 deaths annually in the United States.
Radon comes from the natural (radioactive) breakdown of uranium in soil, rock, and water and gets into the air you breathe. Radon can be found all over the U.S. in any type of building — homes, offices, and schools — and results in a high indoor radon level. In fact, nearly one in ever 15 homes in the U.S. is estimated to have elevated radon levels.
Radon gas is measured in picocuries per liter (pCi/L) of air. The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) recommends reducing radon if the result is 4.0 pCi/L or more excellent and considering similar measures when the radon level is between 2 and 4.0 pCi/L. The goal is to get your radon level to the lowest possible.
Fortunately, radon is a health hazard with a simple solution. Testing your home is quick, easy, and inexpensive. If radon is detected in your home, radon reduction systems are available to lower the radon levels of your home.
Radon Test Kits are sold at the Health Department for $7.
Radon Testing for Child Care Centers
Require centers to be tested for radon gas levels within 6 months after the rule’s effective date or 6 months prior to providing care for children. If the radon gas levels exceed 4 pCi/L of air in the lowest level of a center that is used by children in care for at least 7 hours per week, a radon mitigation system must be installed.
Funding for activities related to radon mitigation is available under Payment Program A of the Child Care Counts: Stabilization Payment Program, which will provide monthly payments to eligible regulated child care providers through January 2024 to support costs to remain in regulatory compliance, enhance health and safety practices, and promote continuous quality improvement.
After the initial tests, centers in residential buildings will be required to test for radon every 2 years.
The most popular style of radon mitigation systems in Greenfield are through the garage. Garage systems start in the basement, run up the basement wall into the garage through the joist, and then extend up the garage wall through the roof. The radon fan is also placed inside the garage along the piping. This is the most aesthetically pleasing style of the system because of how hidden the pipe is from the exterior. The only part of the garage-style system visible to the exterior is the vent stack on the roof. Exterior-style systems run the same in the basement as the garage system, but the piping extends outside the home instead of going into the garage. The radon fan is placed exterior, and the piping, per EPA standards, must extend 6” above the roofline.