Radon is the second leading cause of lung cancer in the United States. Each year upwards to 22,000 people die from radon-induced lung cancer. Roughly 54 percent of those diagnosed with early-stage lung cancer are expected to live no more than five years after diagnosis.
The Lung Cancer Initiative of North Carolina has teamed up with the N.C. Radon Program to help educate people on the dangers of radon exposure, ways to test for radon and how to keep you and your family safe.
Only one kit per home is needed to determine if your home has a high level. The NC Radon Program website will also have a limited supply of kits available. Once the supply of free kits have been exhausted, the NC Radon Program website will return to providing short-term radon test kits at a reduced cost of $5.34, a kit retailed at $15.00.
Radon is a naturally occurring radioactive gas that is formed when uranium decays in the soil. Uranium is in geological formations throughout North Carolina. When homes or other buildings are built on top of these geological formations, radon is pulled into the home and can concentrate to dangerous levels. Exposure to radon gas has been found to cause lung cancer.
Every home in North Carolina is prone to having a level of radon gas and the N.C. Radon Program recommends that ALL HOMES be tested. This includes apartments, mobile homes, homes with basements, and homes without basements. Radon gas is natural and comes from the l decay of uranium found in rocks, soil and building materials such as concrete. Testing your home for radon gas will help you determine the amount of radon you may be breathing.
Testing your home for radon is as simple as opening a package, placing a radon detector in a designated area, and after the prescribed number of days (usually 2-7 days), sealing the detector back in the package and mailing it to a lab for evaluation. Radon is measured in picocuries per liter of air (pCi/L), a measurement of radioactivity. The U.S. EPA and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommend that homes with radon levels at or above 4 pCi/L be repaired to reduce the amount of radon entering the indoor air.