AUGUSTA – A new tool is available to Maine residents to help them learn about radon exposure in their communities.

The Maine Center for Disease Control and Prevention provides an online data tool that summarizes radon test results at the town, county and state levels, as well as eight years of household survey data about testing, levels above normal and whether those levels were fixed.

Household survey data suggest that only one in three Maine households have tested their homes for radon, a colorless, odorless gas. Radon is the leading cause of lung cancer in nonsmokers and the second most common cause of lung cancer overall. Do-it-yourself test kits from local laboratories and hardware stores typically cost between $30 and $40. They are a simple way to find out if a home has radon.

“These data show that while radon can be found everywhere in the state, there are communities in southwestern Maine and within Hancock and Aroostook counties where more than 50 percent of households have elevated levels of radon,” said Nirav D. Shah, director of the Maine CDC. “Locating these geographic hotspots will help target resources and information to the communities most affected.”

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency recommends mitigation for test results at or above 4 picocuries per liter. EPA also suggests homeowners consider mitigation if levels are between 2 and 4 picocuries per liter. If mitigation is needed, Maine CDC recommends contacting a certified mitigation specialist to ensure a radon reduction system is properly designed and installed.

To view the Maine Tracking Network’s radon data portal, visit https://data.mainepublichealth.gov/tracking.


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