Radon is a colorless, odorless gas that is generated by radioactive decay of uranium in rocks underground. Radon rises from the ground and can become trapped in homes, especially in basements and ground level rooms. People who breath high concentrations of radon over a long period of time are at increased risk for lung cancer, and this is especially high for people who also smoke.
The EPA has named January as National Radon Action Month, and encourages everyone to test their homes for radon and remediate them if radon levels are high. VDH’s Indoor Radon Program has a map of radon risk for Virginia showing areas with high and low risk, but even people in low-risk areas should get their home tested. Virginians can get a test kit for only $3 at VDHRadon.org. You can get more information from VDH’s Indoor Radon Program or EPA’s website on radon.