Mayor Matalucci announced today that January has been designated Radon Action Month by Dennis Township, in cooperation with the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) Radon Program.

In announcing Radon Action Month Mayor Matalucci said, “Radon is a serious health risk. It is the second leading cause of lung cancer — and the leading cause of lung cancer among non-smokers. But because radon is invisible and odorless it is easy to ignore this potential hazard in our own homes.”

Radon is a radioactive gas that occurs naturally when uranium and radium break down in the soil and in rock formations. Radon gas moves up through the soil and finds its way into homes through cracks in the foundation and openings around pumps, pipes and drains.

“Approximately 5% of homes in Dennis Township are predicted to be above the acceptable limits for radon,” Mayor Matalucci said. “We would like to see as many homes tested as possible, to reduce the radon risk in Dennis Township”.

During Radon Action Month, Dennis Township will provide Radon Test Kits while supplies last at the following location:  Dennis Township Municipal Building, 571 Petersburg Road, Dennisville, NJ.

Radon is measured in picoCuries per liter (pCi/L) of air. The average U.S. indoor level is 1.3 pCi/L.  At 4 pCi/L, the risk of lung cancer from radon is greater than the risk from fire or other home accidents. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and the DEP recommend that action be taken to reduce radon levels if the level in the home is greater than or equal to 4 pCi/L.

Fortunately, testing for radon is simple and inexpensive. Certified radon measurement businesses provide testing services or do-it-yourself test kits. Test kits can also be obtained from many hardware stores and home improvement stores.

If the test indicates a radon problem, radon mitigation systems can be installed at a cost similar to that of other home repairs.

For more information on radon, contact the Municipal Clerk’s Office at 609-861-9700 ext. 223 or the DEP Radon Program at (800) 648-0394 or visit www.njradon.org.