The Real Risks of Radon - It Depends on Where you Live
NORTH CENTRAL FLORIDA - There is what's known as a "radon belt" along I-75 in North Central Florida - and Gainesville is the buckle.
As homes close up tight against the cold weather, the danger increases for radon.
You can't smell it or even see it...but the affects of it are very real.
And your risk of exposure to the gas depends on where you live in North Central Florida.
The first step to finding out if you are exposed comes with testing - the State of Florida does not require testing on homes, but if you are purchasing a home or building one - it's a good idea to find out how much is in the soil.
Radon can seep up into the foundation of a house.
Chris Bird, Director of Alachua County Environmental Protection: "there's things like plumbing and electrical conduits that are poking through the slabs of building foundations. Those can be a real source so there are some techniques to seal up those cracks but for some of the older homes you actually have to use a ventilation system what we call "an active radon system" to remove the radon before it gets into the house."
In Alachua County - the west side of Gainesville has higher levels than the east side and the highest levels are between 39th avenue and 23rd.
High levels also reside all along the I-75 corridor, concentrated from Columbia County down to Marion.
Experts also want to make sure people know that radon is a real risk to your health.
It is the second highest cause of lung cancer behind cigarettes.
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