Is Your Radon Mitigation System Making Your House Extra Harmful? – CBS Denver

DENVER (CBS4)Every other home in Colorado has dangerous radon levels, and the companies that test and mitigate them in the state are not required to meet state standards. Colorado doesn’t regulate the industry, although radon is the leading cause of lung cancer. Some lawmakers are now pushing to require radon companies to be licensed.

(Credit: CBS)

The colorless, odorless gas seeps into a house through cracks in the foundation and many people don’t find out until it’s too late. The Environmental Protection Agency recommends testing homes every two years.

Lisa Moran says radon is most likely the cause of stage four lung cancer. She says she was at the top of her physical game prior to being diagnosed in 2015. She says she climbed the Manitou Incline – one of the most challenging trails in the country – without breaking a sweat.

“But I had to stop every few steps to catch my breath.”

She was 44 years old, a non-smoker and had no family history of lung cancer. Her only symptom was a persistent cough.

(Photo credit: Lisa Moran)

“The diagnosis is a shock, but then to find out that it has spread through your body and I had absolutely no idea.”

The only way to find radon is to test it, but Colorado companies don’t need to have education or insurance. Crystal Lytle – a national expert on the radon industry – says she sees flawed tests and flawed mitigation systems here all the time.

“If you have an improperly installed system, your radon levels can actually go up.”

Rep Dafna Michaelson Jenet says the best way to make sure companies know what they are doing is to license them.

“The license really protects the homeowner from injustice in a life or death situation.”

Moran was given a 5% chance to live 5 years. “And I celebrated 5 years in August 2020, so every day I hit the odds.”

(Credit: CBS)

She uses this time to warn others about the risk of radon and an unregulated industry: “People don’t think about it, it’s off the radar and it has to be.”

RELATED: Denver Housing Authority Begins Testing All Public Housing Complexes for Radon

Currently, many companies state that they are certified, but the standards vary widely. If the bill goes through, anyone who practices in the radon industry without a license can be charged with an offense. Some lawmakers say the bill goes too far.

It has bipartisan support and opposition, and has passed two committees, but has a long way to go.

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