Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Action recommended for indoor radon below current guidelines

Date:
December 1, 2009
Source:
Health Physics Society
Summary:
With radon-caused lung cancer deaths averaging 20,000 per year, the Health Physics Society asks the public to consider taking action even at measured levels below current guidelines.

Radon is a colorless and odorless radioactive gas that is produced by the radioactive decay of radium. Radium is a product of uranium decay and is found in trace amounts naturally in nearly all rocks, soils, and groundwater as well as building materials, plants, animals, and the human body.

Related Articles


Radon concentration is expressed as the amount of radiation that would be emitted by radon and its decay products in a liter of air; thus the units are picocuries per liter (pCi/L). The American Cancer Society, on its Web site, states that the estimates for lung cancer deaths caused by radon each year is between 15,400 and 21,800.

The Health Physics Society (HPS) offers the following recommendations to assist members of the public in addressing the potential risks from exposure to radon in the indoor environment:

  1. The radon concentration in a dwelling can only be determined by testing; therefore, the HPS recommends that homes be tested. Approved, "do-it-yourself," short- or long-term radon test kits can be purchased directly from radon laboratories or from retail outlets. Appropriate radon test devices and qualified radon measurement specialists are those that have been approved by the National Environmental Health Association, the National Radon Safety Board, or a state radon program. Because radon concentrations undergo daily and seasonal variation, long-term radon tests (those detectors exposed in the home for more than 90 days) provide a better estimate of the annual average radon concentration.
  2. At levels of 4 pCi/L or more, EPA encourages members of the public to take steps to reduce the radon concentrations and to consider action at levels above 2 pCi/L. The HPS concurs with the EPA's guideline of 4 pCi/L. However, because 4 pCi/L is not a definite line between "safe" and "unsafe," the HPS also recommends that the public consider action at levels below 4 pCi/L. Recent residential epidemiological studies have demonstrated that there is a statistically significant increased risk of lung cancer at concentrations as low as 2.7 pCi/L.
  3. For existing homes with radon concentrations at or above 4 pCi/L, proper radon mitigation can almost always reduce levels below 2 pCi/L. Homeowners, or others responsible for a particular building, should contact a qualified radon mitigation specialist to determine the appropriate actions to be taken to reduce indoor radon concentrations. Confirmatory tests should be made after mitigation to ensure that the system is working properly.
  4. For new construction, particularly in areas designated by the EPA or state radon programs as having the potential for indoor radon concentrations exceeding 4 pCi/L, radon-reducing features or a full mitigation system should be installed at the time of construction. Nationwide, the average cost of installing radon-resistant systems in new construction is in the range of several hundred dollars, while the cost of mitigating an existing home often exceeds $1,000.

Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Health Physics Society. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

Health Physics Society. "Action recommended for indoor radon below current guidelines." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 1 December 2009. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/11/091130084722.htm>.
Health Physics Society. (2009, December 1). Action recommended for indoor radon below current guidelines. ScienceDaily. Retrieved April 24, 2015 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/11/091130084722.htm
Health Physics Society. "Action recommended for indoor radon below current guidelines." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/11/091130084722.htm (accessed April 24, 2015).

Share This


More From ScienceDaily



More Matter & Energy News

Friday, April 24, 2015

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

3D Food Printing: The Meal of the Future?

3D Food Printing: The Meal of the Future?

AP (Apr. 23, 2015) — Developers of 3D food printing hope the culinary technology will revolutionize the way we cook and eat. (April 23) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
'Safest Bike Ever' Devised by British Entrepreneur

'Safest Bike Ever' Devised by British Entrepreneur

Reuters - Innovations Video Online (Apr. 23, 2015) — A British inventor says his Babel bike is the safest bicycle ever produced. Crispin Sinclair - son of famous British inventor Sir Clive Sinclair - hopes the bike&apos;s safety cage, double seatbelt, and host of other measures will inspire non-cyclists to get in the saddle. Jim Drury went to see it in action. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
First Successful Aerial Refueling of a Drone

First Successful Aerial Refueling of a Drone

Reuters - Innovations Video Online (Apr. 23, 2015) — The bat-wing U.S. Navy drone that became the first autonomous airplane to take off and land on an aircraft carrier accomplished yet another milestone on Wednesday, becoming the first unmanned aircraft to undergo aerial refueling. Ben Gruber reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Human or Robot You Decide

Human or Robot You Decide

Reuters - Business Video Online (Apr. 23, 2015) — An ultra-realistic humanoid robot called &apos;Han&apos; recognises and interprets people&apos;s facial expressions and can even hold simple conversations. Developers Hanson Robotics hope androids like Han could have uses in hospitality and health care industries where face-to-face communication is vital. Matthew Stock reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
 
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:  

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories

 

Space & Time

Matter & Energy

Computers & Math

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:  

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile iPhone Android Web
Follow Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins