INDOOR RADON OUTREACH PROGRAM
Radon is an odorless, colorless, naturally occurring radioactive gas resulting from the radioactive decay of uranium, which exists in most soils. Radon enters homes and buildings from the soil under the slab, from the crawlspace, basement, etc. Radon can also be found in some water supplies entering the home or building. Because radon is radioactive, it’s breakdown to other elements releases alpha, beta, and gamma radiations which can be physically damaging. When radon, and especially these decay elements, are inhaled, the lungs can be seriously damaged by this radiation. Studies have determined that as a result of this damage, radon is the overall second leading cause of lung cancer. Radon is also believed to be the number one cause of lung cancer among non-smokers.
Individuals are exposed to elevated radon primarily in indoor environments, homes, offices, schools, daycares, etc. Any home or building, old or new, can have a radon problem. The only way to determine if a home or building has elevated indoor radon is to test. Fortunately, testing can be easy and relatively inexpensive. Low cost short-term as well as long-term test kits are available from many radon specialty vendors as well as local hardware and DIY stores. Reduced cost, short-term radon test kits are also available to New Mexico residents from Alpha Energy Laboratories (see link at bottom of this page). A limited number of free radon test kits are also occasionally available through this program and can be obtained by contacting the Program Coordinator.
Health organizations worldwide have determined that there is “No safe level of indoor radon.” The EPA recommends that owners of homes or buildings with an annual indoor radon average of 4.0 pCi/L (picoCuries per liter) should consider fixing or “mitigating” them. If a home or building has been found to be high in radon, various mechanical means can be used to correct this problem as well asprevent radon from entering into the indoor spaces. It is also very easy and cost effective to build new homes such that they are radon resistant.
The Indoor Radon Outreach Program was formed by the Department to provide public education about the health risk of radon gas, and disseminates information on methods for fixing (mitigating) radon problems. The Program is funded by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). The Program also prepares public service announcements, and seasonally distributes (late fall and early winter), on a first-come-first-served basis, free radon testing kits to the public. The Program works with other state, federal and local agencies to provide outreach to communities and the public through public meetings, workshops, health fairs and presentations. . If you are interested in having a presentation for your group or organization, contact the Program Coordinator.
For more information on radon service providers or services please visit the Radon Related Web Links below or contact the New Mexico Radon Program Coordinator Michael A. Taylor.
For questions on or updates on this program please contact:
Michael Taylor, Program Coordinator
Indoor Radon Outreach Program
(505)476-8608 Office Telephone
(505) 476-8654 Office Fax
New Street Address starting March 1, 2013.
Radiation Control Bureau
Radiation Control Bureau
EPA Radon Home Page
AARST National Radon Proficiency Program
National Radon Safety Board
National Environmental Health Association (NEHA)
National Safety Council Radon Web Page
Alpha Energy Laboratories
Air Chek, Inc.
For information regarding this page, contact Carl Sullivan of the Bureau at firstname.lastname@example.org.