Radon Found in Portland Public Schools
When public schools in Portland, Oregon were recently tested for radon, local residents were in for some bad news. High radon levels were discovered across several of these schools. Unfortunately, this isn't the first safety hazard these same schools have had to face, as lead was found in the drinking water just a few weeks before.
Out of about 800 school rooms tested, 121 were found to have radon levels higher than 4 pCi/L (picocuries per liter), which is the Environmental Protection Agency's recommended action level. Another nine rooms had levels over 10 pCi/L.
Parents were understandably upset, though some weren't very surprised, citing the poor overall condition of some of these buildings. The school district plans to continue follow-up testing and conduct radon mitigation for the rooms that need it. It's crucial that they do so, especially in fact of recent findings that radon disproportionately affects children.
Portland schools had also tested for radon back in 2001 and received mitigation for high radon levels at that time, showing the need to constantly stay on top of this dangerous gas. Radon is the second-leading cause of lung cancer after smoking, causing about 21,000 deaths a year in the US.
Radon affects more than just public buildings – it can just as easily be found in a residential space. If you're concerned about this risk in your own home, it's always a good idea to perform a radon test and have a professional assess your home. National Radon Defense is a network made up of radon experts across the country – find your local dealer today to schedule a test or estimate!
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