Oregon School District Conducts Radon Testing

Because radon—a naturally occurring radioactive gas—is odorless and tasteless, many people don’t suspect its presence. Shockingly, two-thirds of all homes in the United States exceed the target level of radon of 0.4 pCi/L. According to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), radon is the number one cause of lung cancer in non-smokers. 

In 2015, Oregon state passed House Bill 2931, requiring all school districts to test for radon and report their findings to the Oregon Health Authority (OHA). In light of this bill, an Oregon school district sought out G2’s radon testing services for their schools and associated facilities. 

The testing protocols used for this client were based on OHA’s guidelines for Oregon schools. G2 chose the short-term activated charcoal absorption test, a test that OHA states is “quick and easy to use and is practical for screening purposes over a short period of time.” 

G2 placed the short-term activated absorption test devices on interior walls at least three feet from doorways, hallways, windows, exterior walls, and heating or air conditioning vents. Once they were collected, the results were sent to market-leading laboratories for sample analysis.  

The first round of testing found areas throughout the district that exceeded the EPA action level of 4.0 pCi/L, which prompted G2 to provide the client with various mitigation options, schedule retesting at the beginning of the next school year, and create a long term radon sampling plan. 

Confined spaces like schools expose people to much higher concentrations of radon. Many school buildings that have undergone radon testing have reported higher-than-normal levels in both classrooms and drinking water. Radon can have a big impact on indoor air quality and the health of families, students, and employees. The only way to know the level of exposure in any given setting is to have radon testing done by a professional. 

Read the case study to learn the multi-layered approach G2 designed for the Oregon school district once receiving the conclusive results.