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Tuesday, February 12th by Mary Smith
Radon, a naturally occurring radioactive gas, is estimated to cause as many as 21,000 lung cancer deaths a year in the United States. Certain areas of the country have higher radon levels in the soil due to the amount of uranium in fault lines and fissures in bedrock. The danger comes into play when a building or home is located on land with greater amounts of radon present. On January 11th, 2013, the American Association of Radon Scientists and Technologists announced that a new standard has been approved by the American National Standards Institute to reduce radon in new construction of one and two family homes.
This new standard, referred to as RRNC 2.0, provides code-specific language for dealing with radon in new constructions. The new RRNC 2.0 standard provides a tool to ensure that new homes do not create a greater radon risk for occupants or long-term liabilities for developers, bankers and builders. RRNC 2.0 is a "model code" standard for the installation of radon control means and testing of new construction. It's intended to replace the International Residential Code Appendix F in the body of the building code. It is planned that this will become a prescriptive building code with performance requirements to treat all foundation types with a radon system "rough in" including soil gas collection plenum(s), piping and an electrical junction box - and to require radon testing for an occupancy permit. If the unit tests high, the system can be easily activated.
Adherence to the new code will reduce not only the health risks but also financial risks to builders and bankers who are concerned about building homes with long-term radioactive problems. It is estimated that over 8 million U.S. homes and 70,000 classrooms contain high levels of radon. A proposal will be made to the IRC to replace Appendix F with this standard in April 2013 at the committee hearings in Dallas, Texas by the AARST.
If you suspect radon in your home, contact a certified radon inspection specialist to set up the continuous radon monitor (CRM). A radon gas measurement specialist will install the CRM. This visit usually takes about five minutes, during which time the specialist makes sure that the CRM is placed in the best location in your home. The specialist will also make sure you're informed of the required house living conditions for accurate testing. The specialist should return after a minimum of 48 hours. During this second meeting, the specialist will connect a thermal printer to the CRM and use it to print your radon testing results right there on the spot. This process generally takes between 10 and 15 minutes.
If you already have a radon mitigation system installed and it's over five years old, it's recommended that you have your system inspected. This will ensure that you and your loved ones are protected from radon exposure. The EPA recommends that all homes with a radon mitigation system be tested every two years.
When it comes to radon mitigation, it is important to find a radon mitigation contractor that you can trust. Members of the National Radon Defense's national network of radon abatement companies offer the knowledge, experience, and training to get the job done right so that you can rest easy! Schedule a radon testing estimate with a radon removal specialist in your area.