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What you can’t see could kill you

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Radon gas is the leading cause of in-home deaths in the country

By Carol A. Clark

A local family narrowly escaped death when carbon monoxide gas seeped into their home last year. The gas is invisible and odorless but did trigger an alarm, alerting the mother who woke her daughters and rushed them into the fresh night air. The source of that gas was never determined.
Another gas that is a growing concern is Radon, according to the World Health Organization and Environmental Protection Agency. Radon gas is a problem in nearly 20 percent of the homes in the United States and it took the lives of some 20,000 Americans in 2009, according to the agencies. These startling statistics have prompted the agencies to designate Oct. 17-24 as National Radon Awareness Week.
Los Alamos isn’t known for Radon issues but that doesn’t mean it doesn’t exist here. Fire Marshal Mike Thompson said, “I’m unaware of emergency issues specific to Radon in our area but if people are concerned with the levels in their homes then it would be worth checking into.”


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