Radon is the second leading cause of lung cancer in the United States. It is estimated that radon is responsible for more than 20,000 deaths per year in the United States alone.

Radon is an odorless, colorless and tasteless gas that is released by the decay of uranium, a naturally-occurring rock in our soil. When radon is released, it can seep through cracks in the foundation of our homes. Exposure to this deadly gas can lead to lung cancer.

The only way to know if your home is safe is to test the radon levels. Test kits can be purchased at most hardware or home improvement stores. They are simple to use and typically cost between $15 and $25. If your home has unsafe levels of radon, there are radon reduction systems that are effective and not too costly. To learn more about testing your home, view our map of radon in Illinois and check our list of radon resources.

Respiratory Health Association is active in advocating for awareness of radon and stricter regulations on radon in Illinois. Successes include:

 EPA Radon
  • Child Care Act, which was amended in August, 2012, and requires that starting January 1, 2014, licensed day care centers, licensed day care homes, and licensed group day care homes be tested for radon at least once every 3 years.
  • Illinois Residential Building Code Act, which was amended in August 2012, and was effective immediately, provides that a contract to build a home must contain a provision requiring a radon mitigation system be included in the construction.
  • Illinois Radon Awareness Act 2008, which requires people who are selling their homes in Illinois to disclose results of radon testing and provide homebuyers with radon information.
  • Amendment HB4606 to the School Code, which requires that every school building in Illinois be tested for radon every five years. School districts must notify parents and faculty of test results.
  • Radon-resistant building codes task force, a statewide task force to make recommendations concerning the adoption of building code rules for radon. Respiratory Health Association's Elieen Lowery, director of lung health initiatives, has been named to this task force.

For more information, contact Amy O'Rourke:
Email Amy
(312) 628-0217