Thu, 20 March 2008
March 20, 2008
Grubb forwarded the results to contractor Rodgers Builders Inc., the original Latta Pavilion contractor.
Bill Brodhead, president of Riegelsville, Pa.-based radon-mitigation service WPB Enterprises, was brought in by Rodgers to analyze the severity of the problem and to help find a cure. "We know there is a situation there. I can't answer who, where or when."
Because of local soil conditions,
The gas can also come from building materials such as concrete or stone fireplaces.
Brodhead found radon readings in Latta Pavilion units ranging from 5 to 10 picocuries per liter, the unit of measurement that quantifies radioactive particles. The EPA says radon is dangerous in the home at 4 picocuries per liter.
He sent the results to Felix Fong, radon program manager for the N.C. Department of Environment and Natural Resources' division of radiation protection in
Fong's explanation: The radon could be generated from the building materials inside the units. Radon is typically concentrated in areas with lots of granite, shale and phosphate in the soil. So building materials such as concrete or stone that originated from an area where radon occurs naturally at high levels would be a possible source.
If the radon in Latta Pavilion is coming primarily from building materials, Fong says the fix will not be easy. "Radon is a mysterious thing. It can slip in any crack or hole of a house."
Not so mysterious is the need to find a fix -- and someone to pay for it.
In a unit where the level of radon measures 8 picocuries, the chance for that resident to develop lung cancer is 14 out of 1,000, Fong estimates. By comparison, a pack-a-day smoker faces a 50 in 1,000 chance of developing lung cancer.