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January is c-o-o-ld in Iowa, and is the perfect time to test for radon with closed building conditions during Radon Action Month. During January, Energy Association of Iowa Schools (EAIS) joins the Iowa Cancer Consortium, Healthy Homes Radon Education, Iowa Department of Public Health, American Lung Association and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency in encouraging Iowans to test their schools and homes for radon. Radon is the leading cause of lung cancer deaths among nonsmokers in the United States, yet elevated radon exposure can be prevented.

Your home is likely to be your most significant source of radon exposure. Because radon cannot be seen, smelled or tasted, the only way to know if it is present at elevated levels is to test. Radon testing takes 3-7 days, costs only $15 for a kit and lab processing, and is easy! In Iowa, just call 1-800-383-5992 to order a home test kit, which is a small hanging envelope containing charcoal. If your results happen to show a higher-than-suggested level of radon,  there are many certified residential radon mitigators who can help you take action to reduce the risk of lung cancer by reducing radon concentrations.

In regard to public places like schools, the State of Iowa requires 4-year old preschool spaces to be tested for radon. However EAIS believes all staff and students deserve to be safe. EAIS helps Iowa school districts test for radon, save taxpayer dollars and keep community members safe by training school personnel in the School Radon Training & Support System©This year’s roster was full, and kickoff workshops occurred in October and November 2016. Encourage your local school district to participate next year!

For more information about testing your home for radon, watch this Iowa Public Service Announcement at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Lgk_-auiPpA.