STATE COLLEGE, CENTRE COUNTY - Radon is the second leading cause of lung cancer behind smoking according the Surgeon General.
"We've got a lot of people that don't believe in it," says Gary Winterrowd, owner of Nittany Radon & Mold Testing. "I had a guy tell me, 'I'm 80 some years old, it doesn't bother me!'"
Radon is a radioactive gas with no taste or smell. It can be deadly.
"It's uranium that's degrading," Winterrowd said. "It changes forms a couple of times before we call it radon."
Winterrowd said Central Pennsylvanians should not hesitate to have their homes tested for the radioactive gas.
"There's a lot of uranium below us," he said. "Especially if you have cracks in your floor, cracks in the wall."
Centre, Huntingdon, Mifflin, Blair, Bedford, and Juniata counties, among others, are considered Zone 1 radon areas, meaning they have a predicted average indoor radon screening level greater than 4 picocuries, levels considered potentially dangerous for humans.
"My highest reading ever when I tested a home was 181 picocuries," Winterrowd said.
For homes with readings greater than 4, Winterrowd recommends something called radon mitigation.
"What it does is pull the radon out of your house, exhausting it to the outside air while sealing any cracks in the basement," he added. "They [radon mitigators] seal as much as they can."
The EPA has designated January a radon action month.
- To view EPA radon zones of Pennsylvania county by county, view this page....
- For more information about radon and radon testing, visit the EPA's radon page here...
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