Be Safe at Home: What is radon, why it’s a concern, what can I do about it and resources
What is radon?
Radon is a colorless, odorless radioactive gas that seeps up from the earth and has been proven to cause cancer.
The greatest risk for exposure to radon is inside your home. It doesn’t matter if your home is old or new; well-sealed or drafty; with or without a basement. Average radon levels rise and fall throughout the seasons due to home ventilation and heating. Radon levels tend to be higher in the winter but can be high any time of the year.
Why is radon a concern?
- About 40% of radon tests in Dakota County homes (and across the state) are above the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) action level of 4.0 pCi/L
- Radon is the number one cause of lung cancer in non-smokers and the second leading cause of lung cancer (after tobacco) in smokers
- Approximately 21,000 people nationwide, including an estimated 500-700 Minnesotans, die each year from lung cancer caused by radon exposure, according to estimates by the U.S. EPA
What can I do about radon?
- The only way to detect the presence of radon is through a test:
- Get your FREE test kit
- Call (952) 891-7500
- Visit your local hardware or home stores for about $15 to $20 (lab analysis may require an additional fee)
- If radon is discovered, a list of radon removal companies can be found on the Minnesota Department of Health website.