When conducting radon inspections in real estate transactions, Julia does business as "The Radon Lady". If you were referred to RadonLady.net, you are at the right place.
What is Radon?
Radon is an invisible, radioactive gas produced in the soil from the decay of naturally occurring uranium. The amount of uranium in the soil varies, but it's pretty much everywhere and in Santa Fe County it is estimated one in three homes is high in radon.
It's not so much the radon, a gas, that's the danger, but within a half-life of about four days it undergoes radioactive decay and turns into a solid, radioactive particulate that gets stuck to the lining of the lungs. These solid, radioactive particles are large enough to chip glass as seen under a microscope. It can take 10-40 years to show up as Lung Cancer. It is for these reasons that:
Radon is the leading cause of lung cancer among non-smokers
Radon is the 2nd leading cause of lung cancer among smokers
EPA Action Level
When we test, we are looking for the 'average' radon level over a period of time. In a real estate transaction, that is usually 48-60 hours. The EPA has set a number called the 'action level', meaning the home should be mitigated if it tests at that level or higher.
EPA Action Level is 4.0pCi/L which mean Picocuries per liter. (WHO is 2.7pCi/L for the rest of the world)
What it means for occupants:
- Equivalent to smoking eight cigarettes a day (at 10pCi/L = a pack a day)
- Equivalent to over 200 chest x-rays a year
- 35 times the level the Natl. Regulatory Commission allows at the fence of radioactive waste sites (at 25m/rem)
*Children are more susceptible and get greater exposure (cells dividing faster, closer to floor)