06-23-2017  3:08 am      •     
  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4

NEWS BRIEFS

Multnomah County Leaders Release Statement on Safety at Summer Events

Officials advise public to check in, have a plan and be aware at public events ...

Portland Musician, Educator Thara Memory Dies

Grammy-winning Trumpeter, composer, teacher died Saturday at the age of 68 ...

St. Johns Center for Opportunity to Host Meet the Employer Event June 27

Employers represented will include Mary’s Harvest and Del Monte ...

New Self-Defense Organization Offers Training to Youth in Multnomah County

EMERJ-SafeNow offers July classes for children ages 8-10 and youth ages 15-19 ...

Annual Humboldt Neighborhood Association Cleanup

All neighborhoods and residents welcome ...

U.S. & WORLD NEWS

OPINION

Our Children Deserve High Quality Teachers

It’s critical that parents engage with educational leaders and demand equal access to high quality teachers ...

Civil Rights Groups Ask for Broad Access to Affordable Lending

Charlene Crowell writes that today’s public policy housing debate is also an opportunity to learn from the mistakes of the past and...

Criminal Justice Disparities Present Barriers to Re-entry

Congressional Black Caucus Member Rep. Danny Davis (D-Ill.) writes about the fight to reduce disparities in our criminal justice...

Bill Maher Betrayed Black Intellectuals

Armstrong Williams talks about the use of the n-word and the recent Bill Maher controversy ...

AFRICAN AMERICANS IN THE NEWS

ENTERTAINMENT

Radon risk map

Radon risk level map, credit to the Oregon Health Authority. To view a full size map, click here; to view maps for other parts of the state, click here.

Wintertime often means staying indoors, shuttering windows and curling up with a good book until the weather warms up. This hibernation can also lead to exposure to the hazardous gas, radon.

Throughout January -- Radon Action Month -- the American Lung Association of Oregon and The Oregon Health Authority want to educate Oregonians on the risks of exposure and encourage residents to get their homes tested for radon.

Radon is an odorless, colorless, tasteless and invisible radioactive gas. It occurs naturally in the soil and accumulates in buildings where it can build up to dangerous levels.

The Radon Program operating with the Oregon Health Authority has been tracking data from previous radon tests to determine areas of high risk throughout the state. High risk cities include Scappose, Banks, North Plains, Boring, Dundee and La Grande. An extensive area of Portland, including the north and northeast neighborhoods are also at high risk.

To see what levels have been detected in your neighborhood, visit the Radon Program website at www.healthoregon.org/radon, which lists test data by city and Zip code.

 In addition to radon often being a large contributor to background radiation, inhalation of radon contributes to lung cancer.

“We know from many studies that breathing high levels of radon increases your risk of lung cancer,” said Renée Klein, President of the American Lung Association of the Mountain Pacific.

The Environmental Protection Agency estimates that radon contributes to 21,000 lung cancer deaths per year in the United States; 2,900 of those deaths were people who have never smoked. Radon is the second leading cause of lung cancer in the U.S. after cigarette smoking, and the leading cause of lung cancer among non-smokers.

The EPA and the American Lung Association recommend all homes be tested for radon. The EPA suggests conducting a short-term test from 3-7 days which gives a snapshot of the background concentration. Levels are likely to be the highest during winter heating months when people keep their windows closed and they spend more time indoors.

Brett Sherry, the Radon Program coordinator with the Oregon Health Authority says the data shows a clear and critical need to test homes.

“The take-home message is that every home needs to be tested, regardless of where it is located,” Sherry said. "Radon has been detected in homes all across Oregon. The only way to know if your home has high radon levels is to test."

Radon test kits can be purchased at hardware and home improvement stores, or can be purchased online at www.radonkit.org. Many tests cost between $15 and $25 dollars.

Radon issues can be repaired at a cost similar to many common home repairs. Radon repairs include sealing cracks in floors and walls, which reroute airflow throughout the house.

The EPA suggests contracting with an EPA qualified or state-certified radon contractor to evaluate and rehabilitate radon exposed homes. To find a contractor near you, visit: www.epa.gov/radon/whereyoulive.html

The Radon Program is also offering free radon tests if your Zip Code has fewer than 20 radon test results. Cities that have very few test results include Cornelius, Tillamook, Scio and Brookings. To see if your Zip Code is on this list, visit www.healthoregon.org/radon.

If you qualify, send an email to radon.program@state.or.us to receive instructions on how to get a free test kit, which will be provided while supplies last.

For Klein, the most important action of Radon Action Month is to get that test done so you can know what your risk is.

“Testing is an easy, important way to protect you and your family,” Klein said. “If you don’t test, you don’t know.”

 

Learn more about radon, radon testing and mitigation and radon-resistant new construction, visit www.healthoregon.org/radon or the EPA website at www.epa.gov/radon/nram.

Oregon Lottery PM Home
Calendar
Carpentry Professionals

Photo Gallery

Photos and slide shows of local events

The Skanner Photo Archives