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State Officials Urge Home Testing For Radon

Pennsylvania DEP

Pennsylvania health officials are urging residents to be aware of a deadly gas that is found in many homes, radon. It’s is an odorless and colorless gas that can cause lung cancer.

Radon is the leading cause of lung cancer in non-smokers in the U.S., according to the National Institute of Health. January is National Radon Action Month and the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection is trying to raise awareness through statewide public service announcements.

Pennsylvania DEP Secretary John Quigley said the department is recommending people test their homes for the radioactive gas.

“Pennsylvania has some of the highest levels of radon in the country, in fact about 40 percent of Pennsylvania homes have unsafe levels of radon. So, it’s extremely important for folks to check,” said Quigley.  

Quigley said home radon testing kits are easy to find. They can be bought at most hardware stores, but there are also service providers who can be hired to test for the gas and then find ways to reduce it, if needed.

“The test was easy, it’s putting a canister in your basement for a certain amount of time, sealing it up then sending it in to get analyzed,” he said.


Deanna fell in love with public radio in 2001, when she landed her first job at an NPR station: KRWG-FM in Las Cruces, NM, where she also attended college. After graduating with a degree in journalism and mass communications, she spent a summer in Washington, D.C. as an intern at NPR's Morning Edition. Following that, she was a reporter/All Things Considered Host at WXXI in Rochester, NY. Before coming to Pittsburgh, Deanna was the local All Things Considered host for KUNC in northern Colorado. In her spare time, Deanna enjoys watching movies and TV shows on DVD (the Golden Girls and Little House on the Prairie are among her favorites), bicycling, yard work, and reading.