Officials remind Idahoans about radon testing

Published: Jan. 9, 2020 at 5:04 PM MST
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January is radon awareness month, putting you first, KMVT has what you need to know about the gas.

The Idaho Department of Health and Welfare said in a press release that 2 in 5 homes in Idaho have higher than recommended radon levels.

Radon is the second leading cause of lung cancer, behind smoking, causing an estimated 21,000 deaths each year in the U.S.

Radon gas forms from natural deposits of uranium and radium in Idaho soils. The gas enters homes and buildings through gaps and cracks in crawl spaces and foundations and has been found in every county in the gem state.

Andrew Perttula, the general manager at Servpro, explained how common the gas is.

“Normally in the Magic Valley we don't see it too much, we primarily see it in the Wood River area. However, we have had customers with higher than normal EPA regulated radon levels in Twin Falls,” Perttula stated.

“According to the EPA, the maximum “acceptable” level of radon is 4.0 pCi/L, but even that level is not “safe”, per se. The EPA strongly recommends you consider radon mitigation between levels 2.0 and 4.0. For perspective, the average outdoor air level of radon is 0.4 pCi/L,” Perttula explained.

The Idaho Department of Health and Welfare recommends getting a home radon test, and says high levels can be fixed by a licensed radon mitigation professional, which can be done by Servpro.