January is National Radon Action Month and Teton County Health Department is reminding the public to test their residence, office, or rental for radon. Teton County, along with most of Wyoming, is designated a Zone 1 Radon Area, meaning predicted average indoor screening levels are greater than the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) threshold of 4 picoCuries per liter of air (pCi/L).
Radon is a naturally occurring radioactive gas that can have a significant impact on indoor air quality. When people breathe radon, the radioactive decay products damage lung tissue, which can increase the likelihood of developing lung cancer. Exposure to radon is the leading cause of lung cancer among non-smokers in the United States.
Because it is colorless, odorless, and tasteless, testing is the only way to know the level of exposure to radon. Short-term radon detection kits are available for $10 at the Teton County Health Department.
If elevated radon levels are detected, residents are urged to get their homes or offices inspected or mitigated by a certified professional radon inspector. In 2019, Teton County Health Department sold 153 test kits that were returned for analysis. Test results revealed an average of 5.4 pCi/L in indoor air.
For more information, please call the Health Department’s Environmental Health Division at 307-732-8490, or stop by the office at 460 E. Pearl Avenue Monday through Friday from 8am – 5 pm for a test kit. To learn more about radon from the EPA, go to their website at www.epa.gov/radon .