Radon is a naturally occurring toxic gas, produced when uranium breaks down in the ground and seeps into homes and buildings above. It is odorless and colorless, and, according to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) causes more annual deaths in the United States than drunk driving.
The federal agency Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) determines and regulates safe levels of radon exposure in the workplace. While the EPA sets safe levels for private homes at 4 picocurie per liter, or piCi/L, OSHA allows up to 100 piCi/L. This safety level is based on a 40 hour per week with continuous exposure per adult over the age of 18.
Radon gas exposure can cause serious illness in humans. The gas collects in the lungs and can cause pneumonia, lung cancer and pulmonary fibrosis. Even with minimal or short-term exposure an individual can experience shortness of breath and labored breathing.
The Federal Radon Action Plan of January 2011 requires radon gas testing in public buildings and schools as part of a larger clean air advocacy program. To date there is no federally enforceable system for requiring or implementing radon testing in the private sector. Both the EPA and OSHA acknowledge that radon gas exposure is a significant health issue.
If you suffer from breathing problems or are a non-smoker and have developed lung cancer, you may have been exposed to radon in your workplace. To find out more about your right to hold your employer responsible for unsafe workplace conditions, contact a chemical exposure attorney. Call the Palm Harbor Law Office of Paul B. Genet, P.A. at 727-538-8865 or contact us online.