Archive for July, 2012

Wednesday, July 18, 2012 @ 05:07 PM
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Radon in Water in Ft. Collins a Serious Health Risk

Radon in Water Fort CollinsRadon is a radioactive, cancer-causing gas responsible for thousands of deaths throughout the United States every year. While airborne radon is the type of exposure that concerns most people, waterborne radon is just as deadly and too often overlooked. Since you and your family could actually be ingesting the waterborne radon, as well as inhaling the airborne radon, prolonged exposure presents a risk not only for lung cancer, but for stomach cancer as well. Put simply, protecting your Ft. Collins home from radon in water means protecting the life of your family members.

Radon is a naturally occurring gas found in rock, soil and, to a lesser extent, water. Radon cannot be detected without special equipment. In Ft. Collins, it is estimated that over 70 percent of homes contain radon levels above the public water standards set by the EPA.

Ground water is traditionally the biggest culprit behind excessive radon levels in a water supply. Since radon is a decayed form of radium, the naturally occurring deposits in the rock that surrounds ground water offers a perfect hiding place for the deadly gas. Since drilling wells can open up fissures in the bedrock, it is almost impossible for the ground water to avoid contact with the radium deposits.

The ground water, now infused with radon, is then sent to the surface and into your home. In addition to cooking with waterborne radon, showering and other household chores can release the radioactive gas into the air — effectively hitting you with the one-two punch of ingestion and inhalation.

How to Detect Radon in Water

Detection of radon in water requires specialized testing — you cannot detect the radon on your own. Ft. Collins offers discounted short and long term radon test kits at the Ft. Collins Senior Center or the Ft. Collins Development Review Center. If radon levels in your home are 4.0 pCi/L or higher, you have a problem.

If you are too busy to test your house yourself, or simply are not confident in your ability to complete the test properly, you can always have a licensed radon removal specialist from SWAT Environmental perform it for you. These specialists have the equipment and the know-how to check your water, analyze it for contamination and recommend steps to prevent or remove the carcinogen.

What to Do about Radon in Your Water

If your home has been found to contain high radon levels and SWAT’s technicians determine that waterborne radon is the problem, several options for correcting it are available. The two most common ways of dealing with waterborne radon are through point-of-entry and point-of-use treatments. The former tends to be the preferred method among professionals, since it removes the radon before it evens enters your home. However, point of use treatments, which remove radon before the water exits the tap, may also be necessary in some cases

With anything as potentially lethal as radon contamination, dealing with the issue immediately is key. For the sake of your health and that of your family, stay informed about your home’s radon levels, and have them reduced if necessary.