RADON AWARDS PRESENTED
TO LOCAL OFFICIALS
The New Jersey Department of Environmental
Protection (DEP) presented awards today to two municipalities
for conducting outstanding radon education programs that
provide an exceptional level of service to their residents
in ensuring that they are informed and taking appropriate
action to reduce the risk of radon-related lung cancer.
Accepting the awards on behalf of the municipalities
were Bernards Township Director of Health/ Health Officer
Lucy A. Forgione and Washington Township (Morris County)
Senior Environmental Health Specialist Michelle McIntyre.
According to State Environmental Protection
Commissioner Bob Shinn, "Radon continues to be the
largest environmental health risk faced by the average person.
A recent national review of radon risk data actually increased
the estimate of risk, to between 15,000 and 22,000 deaths
each year from radon-related lung cancer in the U.S. It
is essential that people continue to test their homes and
take action to protect themselves from elevated radon levels."
The communities conducted a variety of
radon outreach activities during 2000 including notices
about radon in their municipal newsletters and web pages,
public service announcements on local radio and television
stations, Radon Action Week displays, and sale of radon
test kits at reasonable prices.
The presentation occurred during a meeting
of the New Jersey Health Officers Association at the Atlantic
City Convention Center in Atlantic City.
Radon is a naturally occurring radioactive
gas that is created when uranium in the soil undergoes radioactive
decay. If not properly ventilated, it can accumulate to
significant levels in homes and is the second leading cause
of lung cancer after smoking. Information about radon can
be obtained from the DEP Radon Program Information Line,
1-800-648-0394, or from the related website at www.njradon.org.