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Radon is a naturally occurring radioactive gas. It is released during the natural decay of uranium, which is found in most rock and soil. Radon is odorless, invisible, and without taste.
Although certain areas of the state have higher levels of radon then others, radon has been detected in every county in Tennessee.
Radon, like other radioactive materials, undergoes radioactive decay that forms decay products. Radon and its decay products release radioactive energy that can damage lung tissue in a way that causes the beginning of lung cancer. The more radon you are exposed to, and the longer the exposure, the greater the risk of eventually developing lung cancer.
Radon is the second leading cause of lung cancer in the United States, resulting in 15,000 to 22,000 deaths per year. Radon causes lung cancer in non-smokers and smokers alike.
Test your home for radon! There are no exceptions! Every home in Tennessee should be tested especially when you consider the fact that radon related lung cancer kills approximately 22,000 people each year.
The Tennessee Department of Environment and Conservation (TDEC) operates a statewide indoor Radon Program as part of the Office of Sustainable Practices. We offer a myriad of services and assistance: test kits for homeowners, technical information for universities, and specific materials for targeted audiences such as real estate professionals, home builders, building codes officials, home inspectors, and school officials.
Our commitment is strong and our message is simple. TEST FOR RADON TODAY.
The National Environmental Health Association provides an updated list of certified measurement operators and mitigators by state. It also includes a checklist for consumers to ensure that they hire the certified individual that best fits their needs. The site provides training information for those seeking to become certified in measurement or mitigation.
The American Society of Home Inspectors website allows you to become a member of North America's largest, oldest and most recognized organization for home inspectors. There is information for home buyers, sellers, and professional home inspectors. You can also search for a home inspector.
The Environmental Protection Agency's website contains information about radon, air quality, water quality, and other issues regarding human health. The site covers a variety of topics and gives information about your specific location. An electronic copy of all the publications the EPA publishes can also be accessed on their website.
The International Association of Certified Homes Inspectors is the largest home inspector association in the world. They offer home inspection training via online and video courses that have been approved and accredited by dozens of state and governmental agencies, including the State of Tennessee. They offer an approved online Radon Inspection Course.
Kansas State University (K-State), as a partner in the Midwest Universities Radon Consortium, provides national radon services and projects for the US EPA. Our responsibilities include the National Radon Poster Contest, National Radon Hotlines, referrals to State Radon Programs, Radon Test Kit Orders and Coupons, Radon Mitigation Promotion, and other technical assistance and outreach activities.
The National Radon Safety Board's website seeks to encourage the highest standards of practice and integrity in radon services through the development of independent standards and procedures for certifying, approving and accrediting radon testers, mitigators, measurement devices, chambers and laboratories. It is an independent, nonprofit organization modeled on the American Board of Health Physics and is governed by a Certification Panel representing different facets of the radon industry, home inspectors, state governments, and consumer interests. Lists of certified testers can be found here, as well as training information for aspiring testers and mitigators.
The United States Geological Survey website informs readers of geology, biology, mapping, and water. The site provides maps of topography and geology, GIS maps, and weather patterns, among other things. The USGS site also offers some information about karst topography and it's relevance to radon.