News Release

Health Department of Northwest Michigan
serving Antrim, Charlevoix, Emmet, and Otsego Counties
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Radon Test Kits are free at Health Department Offices during National Radon Action Week

(October 7, 2011) To encourage home radon testing, the Health Department of Northwest Michigan is waiving its $15 charge for radon kits during National Radon Action Week. Free test kits can be picked up during regular business hours October 17-21 at Health Department offices in Bellaire, Charlevoix, Petoskey/Harbor Springs, and Gaylord. Please bring your Property Tax Identification Number with you; it is needed to map radon levels in the four-county Health District.

The World Health Organization and U.S. Environmental Protection Agency predict radon gas will be the leading cause of lung cancer for non-smokers in 2011. One in 15 American homes contains high levels of radon. Millions of Americans are unknowingly exposed to this dangerous gas. In fact, a recent study by Harvard University ranks radon as America's #1 in-home hazard.

Scott Kendzierski, Director of Environmental Health Services, said the only way to know if you are exposed to elevated radon levels is to test your home. "Fortunately, testing for radon is easy and inexpensive. And if you discover that you have a problem, the Health Department can provide free consultation and if needed, help you find a contractor to correct the problem."

Radon is a naturally-occurring, invisible and odorless radioactive gas. It is dispersed in outdoor air, but can reach harmful levels when trapped in buildings. By taking simple steps to test your home for radon and fix if necessary, this health hazard can be avoided.

The Health Department of Northwest Michigan is mandated by the Michigan Public Health Code to promote wellness, prevent disease, provide quality healthcare, address health problems of vulnerable populations, and protect the environment for the residents and visitors of Antrim, Charlevoix, Emmet, and Otsego counties. For additional information about radon or radon testing, telephone Scott Johnston, Environmental Health Sanitarian, at 989-732-1794 or visit