What is Radon – Norwalk, Connecticut

What is Radon – Norwalk, Connecticut

Radon Norwalk ConnecticutRadon is a naturally occurring chemical element found in the environment. At the normal range of the Earth’s temperatures, radon is in a gaseous form that cannot be seen, tasted or smelled. Most homes have some level of radon in them, not just in Norwalk, Connecticut, but also throughout the world.

A unit of measurement called picoCuries per liter is used for describing radon levels. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) establishes guidelines for safe levels of radon in Norwalk and throughout the rest of the United States. As long as radon levels remain equal to or less than 4.0 picoCuries per liter, the EPA usually does not recommend taking any action. At higher levels, radon has the potential to cause health problems and needs to be mitigated to ensure that your home in Norwalk is safe for your family.

How Radon Enters Your Home

In Connecticut, radon is found in areas that contain deposits of rocks bearing radium and uranium. The bedrock under Norwalk consists primarily of gneiss, which has trace amounts of the elements. As the bedrock breaks down from the natural effects of weathering and erosion, radon gas is released into the soil beneath homes in Norwalk and throughout the rest of the region. Radon then leaks into homes through a variety of means, including cracks in concrete, spaces in bricks and loose pipefittings.

The EPA establishes certain regions in the Untied States as “High Radon Potential Zones” based upon their geology, and Norwalk lies in one such area. A private radon monitoring company tested radon levels throughout Connecticut to identify places where residents should particularly be concerned about radon. The tests found that homes in Fairfield County, including Norwalk, had average radon level readings around 4.0 picoCuries per liter.

Norwalk also lies in a region that the EPA has identified as having large volumes of radon in its groundwater. Radon gas enters water supplies from the bedrock and is typically filtered out through public water systems; however, Norwalk residents who rely on wells may have high radon levels in the water in their homes.

Breathing in air contaminated with elevated levels of radon gas can cause permanent damage to the lungs. Among nonsmokers, radon gas is the number one cause of lung cancer throughout Norwalk and the rest of the United States. Radon is also the second leading cause of lung cancer in smokers. Norwalk residents at a high risk for lung cancer due to other health problems or family history are particularly susceptible to the effects of radon.

Health problems from exposure to excessive levels of radon gas do not happen overnight. The Connecticut Department of Health recommends that all homeowners in Norwalk test the radon levels in their homes. State-approved testing kits are available at local hardware centers and home improvement stores throughout Norwalk. Finding out that your home has elevated radon levels is the first step toward eliminating the threat of this potentially deadly gas.